Bernie’s Q&A: Djokovic, Biden, Terrorism in Texas, and more! (1/21) — Premium Interactive ($4 members)

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Now, let’s get to your questions (and my answers):


I wonder what you think about Novak Djokovic being denied a visa by Australia because he didn’t get the COVID vaccine? Djokovic says he had COVID last year and recovered, so he should have some natural immunity. Are the unvaccinated the new lepers to governments? — John R.

The Djokovic story did not interest me. Maybe it’s because I’m not a tennis fan. Who knows? As to your question: If you mean it literally, then no the unvaccinated are not the new lepers — for a whole bunch of fairly obvious reasons. One big reason: Lepers didn’t have a choice as to whether they’d be lepers or not. The unvaccinated have made a choice — and they have to live with the consequences of that choice. Whatever they are, they’re nothing like how lepers were treated. But I’m guessing, John, you were exaggerating to make a point.

I see you and I see eye to eye on Jesse Watters. When Bill O’Reilly had him on his show close to a decade ago, “I said to myself, “Who’s this dope? How did he get on television?” I never envisioned he’d get his own TV show. And now he’s got two, in addition to being on the Five, which they say is the highest-rated show in its time-slot.

Jesse and Geraldo Rivera, who repulses me to no end with his misguided egotism, are a perfect counterbalance on The Five. Both say ridiculous things, usually from opposite ends of the political spectrum. And both love themselves far too much, much more than the viewers actually do. They both wrote books displaying this extremely annoying trait. Jesse wrote “How I Saved the World,” and Geraldo wrote “Exposing Myself.” I had the good sense not to read Jesse’s book. But about 25 years ago, I had the misfortune to read Geraldo’s, which basically said he had sex with every woman who ever lived except maybe Joan of Arc and Marie Antoinette. And I can never forget the egg Geraldo had on his face when he opened “Al Capone’s Vault” and found nothing but a couple of broken bottles and a lot of dirt. But he somehow always rises from his own ashes.

It’s a good thing “The Five” has common sense people like Dana Perino and Harold Ford Jr to inject some sanity into the program. Jessica Tarlov, too. As for Gutfeld, he’s smart and funny, and he comes up with some great lines, but I can’t get over the fact that he looks like a chipmunk high on speed.

Bernie, what are your feelings on “The Five? — Joe B.

I try not to watch. And if I’m channel surfing and land on The Five, I may watch for a few seconds. But if Watters is talking, I’m changing the channel.

A friend of mine used to be a big fan of The Five. I asked for his take, and here was his reply:

“The Five was a fun show in the pre-Trump era, but I find it unwatchable these days. Gutfeld and Perino were my favorites because they were honest, principled brokers (even when Gutfeld was cracking jokes) who challenged the more partisan co-hosts (on both sides) when they strolled too far into base-pandering or other unfair positions. After the 2016 election, however, Gutfeld (who had been an outspoken Trump critic for all the right reasons) quickly went full MAGA (I believe to save his weekend show), and Perino — while still an honest broker — turned gun-shy when it came to saying anything negative about Trump and Trumpism; she instead started approaching Trump-critical topics from a neutral communications perspective, which wasn’t nearly as interesting. And of course, Watters is just a blissfully smug know-nothing with no more political insight than a bumper-sticker. The show has lost a lot of its independent thinking and earnestness, but there’s certainly an audience for what it has become, as the ratings demonstrate.”

Bernie, I enjoyed the Monday column regarding the likely strategy of Dems trying to make the midterms all about the Jan 6 events. I am curious as to your thoughts as to what the GOP might do in response and perhaps more importantly how the media may react to such rebuttals. For example, what are the odds that the GOP will craft commercials using footage of the various riots that have occurred during the past 18 months in various cities? And how would the major media players respond beyond their predictable rhetoric? Could ABC for example run commercials featuring the Jan 6 DC riot/insurrection/coup/ ( everyone gets to choose their favorite word) while refusing to run commercials depicting the riots in Minneapolis, Portland or elsewhere? — Mike F.

I think the GOP will play up Biden’s failures — inflation, Covid (“I’ll shut it down”), the border, Afghanistan, crime. And it’s possible that a liberal TV network would run Democratic Party ads and shun those from the other side. But TV stations make a lot of money running political ads. And so I don’t think they run ads from only one party.

Are we really surprised about Biden’s Atlanta speech last week? As for articulating, encouraging and stoking racial divisiveness, he learned from the best – his old boss President Obama. Many of us who didn’t vote for Obama in 2008 were genuinely hopeful for his unique and stated position to move into a post-racial American society. Sadly, as The Who wrote and sang many years ago: “Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.” — Steve R.

Should we be surprised by Biden’s nasty speech in Atlanta. In a word, No. Check out my column that goes up on Monday. It’s about the real Joe.

I see that there was a hostage situation at a left leaning congregation’s synagogue in Texas. Odd, but when the initial FALSE narrative news reports came out about Jussie Smollet, the Covington Catholics, and Kyle Rittenhouse, the mainstream media members AND the Biden/Harris Administration were quick to foolishly condemn all those situations as the result of Trump inspired white supremacist hate-mongers. However in the incident at the Colleyville Texas synagogue, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris rightfully condemned this as a terrorist attack, but they neglected to give the editorial comments in this case (unlike how they did with Smollet and Rittenhouse), even going so far to claim that they have to wait and see what the criminal’s motives were. I find that especially odd since the hostage taker was pretty up front about what his motives were. Well Jeepers Sir Bernie, whaddya think was different about THIS particular situation that made the usual commentators more…uhhh…discretionary…about commenting? Sarcasm ON—-we already know the answer to that one. What I do want to ask you to do is to speculate: what do you think goes on in the minds of a left wing congregation and woke political leaders when the anti Semitic threat comes from a member one of the “victimized hierarchy” instead of the traditional white supremacist Boogeyman?  — “Oh Darn! We Can’t Blame This One On White Supremacy!” Regards from The Emperor

I have no reason to believe the people held hostage in that synagogue said — or thought — anything like, “Well we can’t condemn this the way we would if it were a skinhead who held us hostage.” It may be a liberal congregation, but that doesn’t mean it’s so woke that they actually believe that the ethnicity of the man who was holding the gun was irrelevant. Come on Emperor man … cut the Chosen People some slack.

Dear Bernie, Once again I find myself agreeing but also disagreeing with you. I am sure you would agree that all Americans are guaranteed freedom of speech, even Donald Trump. However, it is unfair to characterize Trump’s allegation of widespread election fraud as frivolous. There is enough evidence of fraud and there were enough irregularities in the 2020 election such that it is not irresponsible to raise these issues. From Mark Zuckerberg funding of Democratic operatives to huge mail in voting. For your information, the NY Times ran a focused group of democratic party voters and were shocked when the participants expressed frustration and sympathy for what motivated the people to go to Washington on January 6. What is really needed is an audit of the 2020 election so that changes in the election laws can be recommended and made. It is therefore simplistic and wrong to state that Donald Trump is “perpetuating a dangerous lie”. The 2020 election was marred and if we want future elections to be fair Trump’s allegations of election fraud should not simply be dismissed. — Frederic N.

Frederick, my friend, let’s not dwell on this topic going forward. You want to know why? Because while there may have been voting irregulars, there was no evidence presented by Donald Trump’s legal team that it changed the outcome of the election. As for Donald Trump — who by the way, doesn’t give a flying F about you or any of his other acolytes; he cares only about Donald Trump  — he is “perpetuating a dangerous lie” by continuing to say the Democrats stole the election. When he casts doubt on something so fundamental to our system as an election– because he’s too insecure to admit defeat — he’s doing harm. And in this sense, he’s also a threat to democracy. And he’s playing his most loyal fans for suckers!

Thank you for the excellent summary of the Biden Show thus far [in this week’s “Off the Cuff”]. You brought up a increasingly broached thought that, due to his endemic deficiencies, he is, in fact, being “handled” by others, thus furthering the disconnect from reality in the Democratic Party. That he is someone’s hand puppet is disturbing enough. That the world order is beginning to seethe and heave toward some kind of long overdue explosion while this dog and pony dance is going on is more than discomfiting. It’s downright frightening. The question is, will Americans wake up to one-rail ride we are currently taking? And if we, do what are the alternatives? With more Trumpian buffoonery waiting in the wings, I am more than skeptical. I guess I am scouring the horizon for an encouraging word. Looking for a friend…. — Jesse B.

Will Americans wake up, you ask. I think they will. Next November. But if Donald decides to run again in 2024, I think there’s a good chance he could lose — to almost anybody except Kamala Harris. I’m taking up a collection to raise enough money to send him to Fiji until the 2024 election is over.

Bernie you crack me up sometimes & I love it. When you gave the answer [in last week’s Q&A] about trying to blame Bill O’Reilly for something & you said only for Jesse Watters, I laughed out loud because it’s so true. Jesse is so arrogant that he has never given Bill any credit for putting him on his show every Thursday night & at that time I liked Jesse & loved how he could keep a straight face asking people those questions & getting back the dumbest answers. I knew Watters World, but only because of Bill who took him on his tour with Dennis Miller, and I went to that show. Jesse was a nobody, and he has thanked all these people except Bill, and I see him as so ungrateful and it really bothers me that he can’t thank Bill who helped him so much. Now we all wish he hadn’t. Thanks for the laughs! –Jean G.

I accidentally stumbled on to something Watters recently said and he did give credit to “The Factor.” I changed the channel because more than 2 or 3 seconds of Watters makes me get sick so I don’t know if he then went on to thank Bill personally. But O’Reilly committed a crime against humanity by giving Watters a platform.

Bernie, good afternoon. And do you know why it is so? Because I haven’t watched an iota of “news” today. And why, you ask? Because it isn’t news. It’s whatever they spew forth for the chosen few who choose to listen and nod there heads as though what they were fed was manna from the gods. Many a moon ago I received my first BA in Broadcast Journalism. I was a news major being taught by some very hard professors who all had been at one time or another news people. And one of the things they emphasized was the difference between opinion and a news story. Although they also said said news would always have some slant to it, but to try and keep your viewpoints as neutral as possible. Also, verify what you are reporting on through some source other then your own creative juices. But that isn’t what we get today. Not even close. And it doesn’t matter which team you’re swinging for, it’s all done about the same. A minute or so of a talking head giving you a sound bite of what someone on the other team said then gathering one or several other like minded babbling fools eager to ride this slimy slope of partisanship to its inevitable conclusion. The only thing that protects my sanity is the fact that there really aren’t many watching this incessant blathering. My question, after much opining, when do you think we might get back to that point of just giving us the facts, ma’am, just the facts? My guess it will only be when advertisers finally look at those abysmal ratings and decide to pull their products. Oh, and by the way, I’d watch that John D. fellow. As the Irishman said in “Braveheart”, “‘e isn’t right in the ‘ead!” — Rod A.

First let me assure ALL of you who are reading this: I did not write what you just read above. It sounds like I wrote it.  I agree with all of it. But it really did come from the pen and mind of Rod, whom I thank for his wise observations. As to your question: I don’t see cable changing its business model anytime soon. Opinion brings in more money than hard news; that’s what viewers tune in for. My problem with cable isn’t simply that the opinion hosts are ideologues and not honest observers. It’s that the line between opinion shows and hard news shows has been obliterated. We now have a kind of hybrid — not opinion like the prime time talking heads, but not hard news like a real hard news show. But, as you say, if ratings sink so low that advertisers won’t pay what they’ve been paying for airtime, then maybe things will change. But I don’t think so. Finally, John D is a fine, intelligent fellow — as long as he’s on his meds.

I think the two worst Biden answers during his press conference were his suggestion that the midterm elections may not be legitimate unless his “voting rights” bill is passed, and the line about a “minor incursion” by Russia into Ukraine possibly not warranting a U.S. response. Trying to delegitamize our elections and kowtowing to Putin were legit criticisms of Trump, and yet there was Biden going down that same path. Embarrassing.  — Ben G.

I agree with you, Ben … one million percent!

Mr. G., After watching the Biden presser, I lost almost all of my energy for giving a crap for either side. But why do think Doocey asked possibly the vaguest and the worst thought out question of the day when he had a perfect moment to hold Biden accountable for so many other things? Swing and a miss in the ultimate clutch Situation! Bonus question: Do you think the James Rosen question was personal retaliation against the treatment he received back in the Obama days? Boy was he dispatched embarrassingly, I cringed for him. What a mess that was. –ScottyG

This is scary. It’s like we had a Vulcan mind melt. I also thought Doocey’s question was not framed right. It sounded so partisan, so Fox NOT NEWS but Fox OPINION. He should have said something like: “CRITICS SAY you have moved to the left. Here are a few examples…  What is your response?” Instead, he simply gave ammo to lefties who have a knee jerk negative reaction to ALL of Fox News.

As for Rosen: He’s very good. Smart. I have no idea what motivated the question.

Bernie, a couple weeks ago, AOC explained that the people who criticize her are just mad that they can’t date her. Do you think this is the same reason people criticize you? — John D.

Yes I do. It’s a curse I have to live with.

 


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Bernie’s Q&A: Ted Cruz, Kamala Harris, Jeffrey Epstein, and more! (1/14) — Premium Interactive ($4 members)

Welcome to this week’s Premium Q&A session for Premium Interactive members. I appreciate you all signing up and joining me. Thank you.

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Now, let’s get to your questions (and my answers):


VP Kamala Harris’s remarks at the Capitol on the anniversary of January 6 were beyond stupid. But they are consistent with the tone and validity of her comments since she burst on the political scene. Harris said that January 6, where one person was killed, was in the same category as Pearl Harbor, where 2500 people died, and 9/11, where we lost almost 3000 people. The only reason she’s vice president is that the people pulling Biden’s strings insisted that he pick a woman of color. Oprah Winfrey would have been a better choice. RuPaul, too. — Joe B.

The comment was needlessly — but intentionally — political, on a solemn day. That said, let me add this: Jan 6 2021 was also a day that will live in infamy, in its own right. Too many Trump supporters want to play down what happened that day. They shouldn’t. Just because liberals say what happened was a disgrace doesn’t mean conservatives should pretend it wasn’t. As for Republicans up for reelection in November: Too many of them are afraid of offending the Prince of Mar-a-Lago. They’re afraid if they speak up about Jan 6 and Trump’s role in instigating the chaos, they’ll face a Trump-backed primary opponent. They care more about their jobs than about principles. Cowardice is never attractive.

Hi Bernie, I came face to face personally with the implications of our vaccine choices today when my sister informed me that she doesn’t want me visiting my 100 year old mother (who lives with her) if I do not have a booster shot for COVID. So, in effect, she is telling me that I will never see her again in this life if I do not agree to take this shot. And President Biden tells me that this is a pandemic of the unvaccinated and Dr. Fauci hints at no air travel without being “fully vaccinated”. I live on the west coast…all my family lives in the northeast. I cannot travel 3 days in a car. Safety of the vaccines aside, what do you know of evidence that has been presented that unvaccinated people are a greater threat in terms of transmissibility of COVID than anyone else? It has not been put out there effectively if it exists. Or is this just a strong-arm effort to get the unvaccinated to conform to the government’s will, proof or no proof? Thanks! — John F.

Why don’t you just get the booster and be done with it?  Whatever the transmissibility stats are, I understand your sister’s position. If you visited your 100-year old mother and transmitted the virus who knows what might happen. Yes, you might transmit it even if you got 10 boosters. But why not play it safe? You have the right to say NO to another shot. And your sister, who cares for your mother, has the right to say, she’s worried. Every choice has consequences, my friend.

I don’t know whether I am more disgusted at the events of January 6, 2021 or January 6, 2022. The Capitol riots of 2021 are well-documented and indefensible. But the lies and lies-by-omission of Democratic leaders last week were astonishing. Joe Biden repeatedly referred to 1/6/21 as an “armed insurrection,” though of the 500+ people who have been arrested, none have been charged with either being armed or causing an insurrection, both of which are illegal on Capitol grounds. His VP, Kamala Harris, equated 1/6 with Pearl Harbor and 9/11. 2,403 Americans died at Pearl Harbor; 2,996 died during the attacks of 9/11; and exactly ONE person (unarmed rioter Ashely Babbitt) died during the three-hour takeover of the Capitol. Finally, Nancy Pelosi called for a moment of silence for four fallen Capitol Hill officers, NONE of whom died in a violent encounter with rioters. The riots of 1/6/21 saw one person killed and $1.5 million in property damage. In the meantime, Democrats are absolutely silent about a string of violent BLM and Antifa riots that occurred all during the summer of 2020. An estimated 25 people were killed, including a retired police officer, along with $2 billion in insured and $5 billion in uninsured property damage, mostly in black neighborhoods. This is the lie-by-omission. I guess I don’t have a question after this long rant, but I do want to get your thoughts on January 6, 2022. — Steve R.

As I said earlier in this Q & A, thanks to the Democrats Jan 6, 2022 was needlessly political. What else is new? And as I said earlier, Jan 6, 2021 is another day that will live in infamy, in its own right. We may disagree on that, but that’s how I see it. And let me be clear: A riot in Portland, as destructive as it was, is not the same as a riot at the Capitol of the United States of America. One is a lot worse. Should prominent Democrats have spoken out, forcefully, about the riots in the summer of 2020. Yes! That they didn’t is on them, and they may yet pay a price for that this November. But those on the right who are playing down Jan 6, 2021 are wrong too. President Biden used the anniversary to score political points — and on that I’m with you, Steve. Here’s where we differ: You say you don’t know if you’re more disgusted with Jan 6, 2021 or Jan 6 2022. I know how you mean that, but I also know which disgusts me more. Not a close call. Finally, I’m pretty sure some of those arrested have been charged with gun violations. As to what we should call it: One year later we can’t even agree on that. The left calls it an insurrection. The right calls it a riot (if that). Let’s agree on this much: It was an utter disgrace.

Bernie, I follow Bill O’Reilly, you, and the Daily Chatter (Phil Balboni) for international news. Do you recommend any other news or commentary sites? Keep up the great work. Love it Bernie. Happy, Healthy New Year! — Brian M.

Thanks very much Brian. I like National Review Online … and most of all the WSJ opinion pages. There are a few others but those are my top two. Happy, Healthy New Year to you too.

BG – I know you wish he would be more restrained, but would you censor Pres Trump if you had the censor button at your finger tips? Do you think it’s right to censor Pres Trump? — Michael B.

No, I would not censor him. I’d let him have his say and then, if he’s factually off base, I’d want someone else to set the record straight — either with other comments or an editor’s note.

I agree with everything you said [in Monday’s column]. But why are we letting that 85% of republican voters off the hook. I am I’m that group that knows Trump lost the election, takes some blame for January 6th, and has problems with some of his policies not just his personality. That being said, forget elected officials. What is wrong with the 85% that still believe in Trump. Biden was right right about one thing. Trump is a defeated ex president. Why can’t republicans get past this toxic love affair with Trump and move on? Trump’s only power is his base. And if they still believe he won the election and the rest of his BS, then the way I see it is they are the problem. — Douglas S.

It’s fascinating — and not in a good way — that he could do so much harm to the Republican Party and still have so much support from Republicans. Politicians … I understand. They’re afraid that he’ll unleash his voters against them. But rank and file Republicans? I’m with you, Douglas, it’s crazy!

Now that Ghislane Maxwell has been convicted, I have to ask: isn’t there a client list somewhere naming all of the ….Umm….Uhhh…”Associates” who may have had business with the late Mr. Epstein? Did the investigators ever find such a list, and if so, will it ever be made public? Call me cynical if you want, but somehow I just can’t help thinking that a bunch of well-known conservatives names are on that client list, along with a bunch of high profile liberal progressives names as well, sort of a “bi-partisan collaboration” one might say. Your thoughts? –“Wall Of Shame” Regards from The Emperor

It ain’t over till it’s over. That list may exist and if it does those names may still come out. You better hope you’re not one of the Royals that gets outed. I’d hate to lose your scintillating observations, Your Highness.

Hi Bernie, You state, “Any Republican running next year who doesn’t buy into his (Trump’s delusion about winning the 2020 election) would not only have a democratic opponent to contend with – but there’s a good chance he or she will have Donald Trump to contend with.”

This is a false statement. For instance take Glenn Youngkin, the new governor of Virginia. Youngkin has stated many times that Joe Biden’s election was legitimate. Yet, Trump still enthusiastically endorsed Youngkin despite their disagreement over such an important issue as the legitimacy of the 2020 election results. At the same time, keep in mind that many if not most democrats never accepted the legitimacy of Trump’s 2016 election victory calling him “the illegitimate president” . Furthermore, isn’t it Trump’s right to endorse those Republicans who stand for the same America First principles as he does. I’m going to paraphrase what I believe you are saying: Trump is an egotistical narcissist who holds grudges and requires homage and subservience from the rest of the Republican party and thus he is a destructive force who must be constrained. I disagree. Regardless of psychological reductionism on your part, I believe Trump is trying to build a Republican party that will be strong enough and united enough to triumph over the radical ideologues who have taken over the Democratic Party.” — Frederic N.

You’re right, Frederic. We disagree. I do think, to use your words that “Trump is an egotistical narcissist who holds grudges and requires homage and subservience from the rest of the Republican party and thus he is a destructive force who must be constrained.” So do a lot of swing voters who helped get Joe Biden elected because they couldn’t take four more years of Donald Trump.

Bernie, you are right about almost everything [in this week’s Off the Cuff], with a tiny exception. No doubt, the journalism business has experienced a reverse evolution in the past decade, which has made it less reliable as a source of news. In the past, a journalist doing a reporting piece never injected his opinion into his story. If they did, they’d been looking for another line of work, like delivering newspapers instead of writing for them. The only thing you said I’m not sure about is that viewers don’t have the right to watch a news program that they know will be favorable to their way of thinking, to their political ideologies. Television is and always has been entertainment. I think people have the right to be entertained in the manner they choose. And if that means, to make them happy, watching Fox for a right-wing point of view, or CNN for a left-wing point of view, it might not be wise to do so, but they still have the right to choose their type of entertainment. No doubt, they will not be wiser for doing so. — Joe

Who said viewers don’t have the “right” to watch whatever they want? I never said that. Not even close. And how you came to believe I said it is beyond me, Joe. I said that my rewarding biased news coverage they were partly responsible for that biased news coverage. That’s all I said about the audience.

Timely [Off the Cuff] commentary! I saw the announcement the other day that Jesse Watters was named permanent anchor of Fox’s 7 pm hour. My immediate reaction was, well I don’t need to worry about watching anything on Fox after 7 PM. Watters is an idiot and hard to watch and Fox isn’t the channel it was pre-Trump. My only issue with your take is that I’ve never been a fan of the “we will decide what to tell you school of journalism”. The journalists of my generation have not particularly impressed me as being qualified to make these decisions and the rise of alternative “news” outlets, that started with the internet in the 90’s demonstrates the how vulnerable that strategy was to letting the audience, the public, know journalists don’t respect them. I miss the days when news was meant to inform, not push agendas. — Henderick G.

If you don’t want journalists to “decide what to tell you” who do you want to decide what gets on the newscast? Someone has to make those decisions. And I don’t want a poll taken to determine what the viewer wants. The viewer can watch whatever show he or she wants to watch. But if they decide what to put on the news, we get what we now have on cable: “News” designed to please the audience. Not good, Henderick, not good.

Hello Bernie from the Minnesota Tundra (where it is a balmy 34f today and we’ll be roasting marshmallows outside in January by the firepit this evening thanks to climate change!) Great piece on how cable has crushed journalism, I have to agree – I’m feeling better now mentally since I’m only streaming vs. fogging up my days or nights with cable opinion and ratings chasers blowharding in the background.

This weeks audio reminds me of the state of the NFL and how bad it has become over the years, an orchestrated network and Truman Show profit bonanza of sorts now primed just in time for the expanded playoff format allowing American’s to soak in another month of football drama as Vegas sports books start ringing up the register and winning billionaire owners make even more hay. From the post touchdown antics in the end zone, TV timeouts allowing the players quality lung refilling blows between plays (more noticeable during live game attendance where one can choose to pay for $15 beers), and sportscasters & sideline reporters filling the commentary void, I’m over it but wondering your perspective on the almighty NFL dollar machine and if you think it has become like cable news? — The Bulldog

Football is a business and the NFL knows how to market that business. I have no problem with that. But the NFL isn’t a news organization. Football can market its product any way it wants. It can be as entertaining as it wants. But news is different from any other business — for the reasons I laid out in my Off the Cuff.

I think you’re off a little bit [in your Off the Cuff this week]. Having graduated from a top Comm school, I believe “journalism” isn’t what it once was. Seems to me that many in not just cable news but virtually all of TV journalism have abdicated their pledge to the truth, if in fact they ever took one. I will note that Tucker never attempts to pass what he does as journalism, its merely his opinion, dont like it, go somewhere else. much different is how Msnbc and Cnn try to pass off what they do as journalism, which it clearly isn’t. All of it seems like a bunch children with cameras whining about the latest butthurt comment from so and so how they feel about it. I saw an interview with Chris Matthews which I’m sure you’ve seen, where he essentially says that newspeople don’t have to give just the facts anymore due there being so much information out there to the viewer. And, that it’s up to the viewer to do their own research to determine what is true and what is not. Parts of that I agree with. I watch and search and absorb info from all over the world, understanding corporate and political bias and then distilling it down to what I believe to be true, which is usually somewhere in the middle usually. Most importantly is the search for the truth and how much are we lied to daily that disturbs me. I dont watch much “news” since I know the lies that I’m being told. — Richard C.

First, Richard, even opinion talking heads have to be fair. They can legally throw stuff out that’s not true but they shouldn’t do it. It undermines their credibility. Tucker Carlson was sued once, for slander or libel or something like that, and the defense was … You can believe what he says because everyone knows he exaggerates. And the judge agreed. Second, I don’t believe (with a few notable exceptions) that journalists make things up. That’s not the real problem. The real problem is — as I said earlier in the Q & A — they play up things they know their audience will like and play down things that will turn viewers away. Why is this bad? Because even opinion journalists should make their case honestly and not be ideological slugs.

Lindsey Graham told Hannity this week that he might not vote for Mitch McConnell to remain as the GOP’s Senate caucus leader because McConnell currently doesn’t have a “working relationship” with Donald Trump. I guess it isn’t enough that McConnell delivered Trump’s biggest victories (SCOTUS and federal judges) while Trump was actually in office. Now he has to continue “working” with him (which really means sucking up to him since Donald’s has no government job) even after Trump lost the presidency and all of congress (including McConnell’s spot as Senate Majority Leader) for the GOP? Do you think Graham will just say whatever it takes to get on Fox News shows, or do you think he actually enjoys presenting himself as a loyal Trump stooge? — Ben G.

I think witnessing cowardice in the flesh isn’t a pretty sight. And if you think I’m talking about Senator Graham, you’re right.

Bernie, “We The People” like Trump for quite obvious reasons. He isn’t a politician and he is authentic whether that authenticity strikes a chord with the dissenters or it doesn’t. 86% is a pretty big number and I would in fact call it a noteworthy trend. Romney, Cheney, and McConnell represent the worst of what the GOP has to offer. Their disdain for Trump is a badge of honor. Trump is far from perfect yet he is authentic and he is a fighter in an arena that needs both. Most Repubilcans realize this and their overwhelming support speaks volumes. — Thomas C.

You’ve told me this over and over again, Thomas. So for the last time, you and I disagree on Donald Trump. You think he’s wonderful, I don’t. You don’t seem to understand how much harm he’s done to the Republican Party. Are you happy that Democrats control the House? Or that they effectively control the Senate? How about the White House? You can thank Donald Trump’s toxic personality for all of that — unless of course you believe the Democrats stole the election, which I’m guessing you do.

Hi Bernie: As usual, I don’t have anything to disagree with in this edition of Off the Cuff. I fear the trend of people watching those who tell them what they want to hear is entrenched deeply however. I have recently come upon a source of information I find interesting in their seeming attempt to balance the story telling: The Dispatch. Do you have any insights on this group of folks? — Paul M.

They’re smart and reasonable. And two of them — Goldberg and Hayes — quit Fox News because they’re smart and reasonable.

Hi Bernie…Would you consider Bill O’Reilly the person to have started all these opinion shows? From my understanding, he was #1 in cable news for a long time, and thus I am thinking this is all HIS fault! 🙂 BTW, I agree with everything you said. I enjoy watching the local news just reporting events in my community than watching national news, be it cable or network. — Tony P.

Bill had different points of views on his show. None of the prime time slugs on Fox have dissenting points of view, unless they want to bash the poor SOB. So no, Tony, I don’t blame Bill for anything EXCEPT … Jesse Watters!!!

Bernie, last week, Ted Cruz referred to the January 6th attack as “domestic terror” — something he’d done almost 20 other times over the past year, without controversy. Then, a day after Tucker Carlson caused a stink about it, Cruz went on Carlson’s show and utterly humiliated himself by begging Carlson and his viewers to forgive him for mistakenly calling January 6th “domestic terror.”

The incident was reminiscent of a more famous example of political patheticism: Cruz morphing into a fervent Trump supporter and defender after Trump trashed his wife’s looks, and suggested his father killed JFK.

Do you agree that it’s time for an online reality show called Cruzin’ for a Bruisin’, where — each week — Ted Cruz is called on (and quickly agrees) to perform some epic, cowardly and self-emasculating political gesture that brings him and his family utter disgrace, purely for the sake of momentary politics?

And would you watch such a show? — John D.

I’m starting to worry, John D. In recent weeks you not only made sense but have come up with ideas I would label “brilliant.” And yes, I’d probably watch such a show because chaos is interesting.

 


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Bernie’s Q&A: Jan 6, COVID, I-95 Backup, and more! (1/7) — Premium Interactive ($4 members)

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Happy New Year Bernie! I hope that 2022 is full of Health, Happiness, and Good Tidings for you and Clan Goldberg. Biden is not only incapable of shutting down the virus, he and his administration (and the individual behind the curtain), are incapable of the basic competency needed to have anticipated and planned for the Covid Spike that his own health officials were forecasting. Biden should have ordered the 500 million testing kits in the Fall and not waited – they already knew we had a supply chain crisis and didn’t seem to take any of that into account. After South Africa alerted everyone to the Omicron outbreak, Biden waited until the following Monday to shut down flights, fully insuring an outbreak in the US. Competent leadership requires the ability to make a decision with less than perfect data – it also requires some ruthlessness. For me, its not only the incompetency but also the lack of initiative to get prepared on Covid that is offensively disappointing. Personally, I think the best option for the average citizen is to get vaxxed, boosted, and then infected with Covid (which happened to me) – it seems one will have a mild case and get through it ok. I understand it’s not an option for everyone, but its clear that neither the administration, the government, or the medical community have anything that will stop Covid at this point, so we might as well get on with things. — Hendrick G.

I’d be more willing to cut Biden some slack if he had cut his predecessor some slack. Instead he blamed him for hundreds of thousands of deaths. He said he, Joe Biden, would “shut down” the virus. Donald Trump couldn’t shut it down Joe Biden couldn’t and I doubt anybody else could have shut it down. If he had been more gracious and less political, I’d defend him. But he wasn’t– and so he deserves the flak he’s getting.

After his constant and unfounded whining about losing the Presidential election and the debacle of January 6, I thought [Trump] was through as a viable Presidential candidate. Sure, I have been wrong before. I had the Titanic minus seven points against the Titanic and General Custer plus three against those pesky Indians. But I figured there was no way Trump would run again for President with almost half the country hating him. Sure he has his solid and sometimes rabid base, but that’s not enough to win a national election. However, now with the dismal showing of Joe Biden and his administration, I think Trump might run again, simply because his ego won’t let him go out a loser. I still doubt he can win, and I don’t think there’s anyone in the Republican Party, except maybe Chris Christie, who would insult him by running against him in the Republican Primaries. Rematches of heavyweight fights usually don’t get well for the chap who lost the first fight (Eg. Walcott versus Marciano and Patterson versus Liston). But Trump is a live underdog against anybody the Democratic Party can throw against him in 2024. Trump redux? Don’t bet against it. Bernie, what say you? — Joe B.

I say you nailed it, Joe. I hope Trump doesn’t run, but that would require him caring more about his party and his country than he cares about himself. Want to talk about odds, Joe? That’s a real long shot. But I do think he could beat at least one Democrat: Kamala Harris. Elections these days are determined by swing voters, moderates. They won’t vote for her. But I don’t think she has a chance of winning the nomination. I do disagree with one point you made. Giving Custer just 3 points wasn’t nearly enough. You should have taken the other side and given the points. The Indians are always tough at home.

Greetings Sir Bernie! Over the holidays I came up with a brilliant solution to a pressing problem in America, and I think this could earn me a Nobel Peace Prize because so many people will be happy with my idea! Instead of having transgender guys who identify themselves as females competing against biological females in sports and using their rest rooms and such, let’s have rest rooms that say “Biological Men” “Biological Women” and “Trannies and All Others.” Furthermore (and this is the big one), high schools and especially colleges and universities must now sponsor sports teams exclusively for transgender individuals only—- that way no one could complain that biological females were being forced to compete against biological males who identify as female because there will now be the Trans-Athletes who will have their own leagues to compete in against each other! What could possibly be more fair than that!? Everyone would finally be happy because the problems of fairness and inclusion would finally be solved because everybody would have their own leagues and rest rooms! How could liberal academia possibly object? What could the LGBTQ community possibly have to complain about at that point? What could possibly stop me from winning the Nobel Prize!? –“A Trans-Athletic League Of Their Own” Regards from The Emperor

There’s only one thing that could stop you from winning the Nobel Prize. I’m pretty sure they don’t hand them out to inmates at state institutions — even Royal inmates.

I know you’re showing off your special brand of high-end, intelligent humor, but let me get serious for a moment about transgender leagues. There aren’t enough transgender athletes to allow it to work — otherwise it would be a great idea. But there’s one other point: The transgender community wants us to recognize transgender people for who they NOW are. So if a man transitions to being a woman, they want her to be able to compete (and everything else) as a woman.

The feminist community is in a real bind. If as tried and true progressives they support transgender women in sports they’re hurting only one group: Female athletes who were born female. Will NOW speak up for girls and women? Don’t bet on it. And don’t bet on General Custer either — not when he’s on the road.

You know how Fox and many “Right-siders” both on TV and social media keep showing and posting Left sided media clips so they can opine or rail against them? Wouldn’t it be better to try just ignoring them all and stop re-posting and re-airing them and exposing them to people who really don’t want hear that crap; and thus make them go away sooner by reducing their exposure? To me they’re keeping the balloon inflated vs letting it self deflate. It’s why i turn it off, I’m already convinced the loons exist so I don’t need to be reminded.  –ScottyG

Both sides play the same game. Fox shows CNN and MSNBC clips and screams about how biased they are, and they do the same with Fox clips. It’s like third grade. “Yeah, but they started it!” Morons. Like you, Scotty, I’ve had enough of this crap.

The latest iteration of the virus is quite mild as far as I can tell. Mainstream Media will continue to tell us it is the bubonic plague and we will continue to be told it is far too dangerous to vote in person come 11/22. Deja vu… Bernie, still can’t figure out how so many good people like yourself don’t appreciate the true depths that the left will sink to in order to get what they want. Power, Control, and Wealth. Not saying all Republicans are saints, but in a poison picking contest, it isn’t much of a choice. — Thomas C.

I’m no fan of the progressive left — I hope you know that — but I see the hypocrisy on both sides. I don’t take Rachel Maddow seriously but I don’t take Sean Hannity or Laura Ingraham or Tucker Carlson seriously either. They’re all ideologues. They all lack principle. They all play up the bad on the other side and play down their own crap. That bothers me — more, I’m figuring than it bothers you. Be assured I’m not trying to convert you or anyone else. Just telling you how I see things.

Happy New Year to you Bernie. As we move into a new year, I have been thinking about the notion of superiority because it seems that today the notion of one’s superiority is baked into many of our most critical issues. Two examples come to kind as I watch the endless debates and diatribes about moral issues and issues that go to the heart of identity politics (mainly but not exclusively on the basis of race). So here are my questions:

  1. What makes one morally superior to someone else and what makes one’s identity group superior to another identity group
  2. Whatever happened to the quaint notion that many of us were raised with that I am no better than you and you are no better than me?

The latter question of course relates to the concept of equality and of the character trait of humility. If only everyone put “being more humble” and “being less judgmental” on their list of 2022 resolutions. — Mike F.

What makes one morally superior to someone else? That’s a philosophical question, my friend. And the answer depends on what we value most. As for the “I am no better than you and you are no better than me” part: Not sure I buy into that. I’m pretty sure you’re better than Pol Pot. Okay, that was too easy. As for being “less judgmental”: If we’re not judgmental, how should we come to conclusions about people? I have no problem being judgmental about all sorts of people and things. It becomes a problem, I think, when we think we’re above it all. When we don’t see our own shortcomings. End of Philosophy 101.

Happy New Year to all. Our legislative system needs improvement, and there are a couple of improvements that I fervently pray will happen: term limits on all federal laws and regulations; all federal laws and regulations can be no greater in word length than the US Constitution + the first ten Amendments. The Biden Adm. blames meat processors for the 2020 inflation and will use the Packers and Stockyards Act of 1922, the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890, the Clayton Antitrust Act of 1914, among others, against those companies. Being an American should not carry the requisite of being a freelance attorney at law with knowledge of all commercial (and other) law the country has created the last 239 years. Anytime a politician, or anyone, intends you harm, they can find some historic law to achieve that. Putting a term limit will remove most laws and if laws are so good, they could be rapidly renewed and amended if needed. The new infrastructure bill is over 2,000 pages with hundreds of citations to tens of thousands of other pages. The founders did not intend laws and regs to be so complex, convoluted and difficult to understand. I do not gamble, but I will bet that there is not one elected official that read that bill, so how do they expect the rest to have full knowledge of it? Our legislative production MUST be current and easily understandable by the common citizen . . . but it is not. — Don Estif

You’re right. Pols pass laws they haven’t read. As that brilliant stateswoman Nancy Pelosi once said: We have to pass the law to know what’s in it.” But if there was a law that said, a politician who votes on a law he or she hasn’t read will be imprisoned for 25 years to life. I’ll bet they’d either start reading what they’re voting on or maybe keep the bills down to a few hundred words — at most. And I predict this will happen on a Tuesday evening — WHEN HELL FREEZES OVER. Happy New Year, Don.

In reference to your January 3rd piece “Did Joe Biden Stumble onto the Truth about the Virus? Finally?” A few weeks ago, with the outbreak of Omicron, Dr Fauci held a press conference where he explained what they were doing to check people on incoming flights from overseas, etc. Peter Doocy asked what he was doing at the Mexican border where Fauci simply stated that’s a different story and basically, blew him off. I believe Fauci is a national disaster. For lack of a better description, he’s wishy washy, lacks leadership skills and has been a detriment to this international disaster. Speaking to doctors I know; they lack the basic therapeutics to treat patients. If I was in command, Fauci would be canned. Dr. Marc Siegel on Fox I believe has been an excellent source of information on Covid and how to protect yourself. In a recent piece he wrote of the Five ways people can be unafraid of this latest outbreak. He brings optimism and hope where Fauci speaks like Dr. Death. If I had a choice, Dr. Siegel would be running the show in this crisis. Just want to get your take on Fauci. — Tim H.

While I think there’s certainly plenty of basis for criticizing Dr. Fauci — though not the off-the-charts kind that is often aired in right-wing media — I’m kind of surprised, Tim, that you put so much stock in Dr. Siegel. I asked a friend who follows this closely and he told me the following: “Dr. Siegel was one of the earliest downplayers of the pandemic, insisting that COVID, at its very worst, would be as serious as a normal flu season. He was also a big hydroxychloroquine guy who thought Trump did a splendid job of managing the health crisis.” I don’t know about you, but I’m a big fan of Dr. Scott Gottlieb, the former FDA  commissioner — and a regular on CNBC most mornings.

I am really tired of hearing about the Jan. 6th 2020 riot or disturbance or whatever a person calls it to suit their own beliefs. Yes Trump is not and never has been a good person, however most of his policies actually helped this country and I do not see the same happening with Pres. Biden or even Harris. In fact I see the opposite happening. He has been dividing this country further into something very ugly. I do not believe that Joe has the mental capacity to, by himself, handle the government functions required of a leader elected by theoretically the most powerful nation in the world. He is handled and handled poorly. I tire of all media sources speaking only about Trump. What about Joe? Start reporting the news accurately please, no matter your political leanings. I believe most people lie in the middle politically and I wish that the media would do us all a favor and start reporting news and stay out of opinion politics. Oh well, I guess this is the new world we live in. God help us all. — Charles M.

I’m with you on Biden dividing the country … but not much else.  You say you’re tired of “all media sources speaking only about Trump.”  Fox almost never speaks about him — not when it comes to Jan 6 anyway.  They have downplayed that disastrous day.  Are you OK with that?  You don’t like the liberal obsession with Trump.  Fair enough.  But ignoring Trump’s toxic character — as Fox opinion people have been doing for years — is bias too.  And what about Fox doing “interviews” with him and tossing him softballs?  Finally, cable news won’t stay out of opinion politics because that’s where the money is.

I’m wondering if you’re still watching Fox News Sunday now that Chris Wallace is gone? While I know Fox has other competent journalists who could fill the chair, I’ve lost all desire to watch it. — Ben G.

It’s no longer must-see-TV.  The fill ins are OK, some better than others.  But none have the heft that Chris Wallace had.

I’ve got to ask you about the I-95 traffic jam that lasted about 24 hours. Have you ever been stuck in traffic on I-95? Can you imagine having to spend an entire day and night in your car there? Do you think there will be any political fall-out from that traffic jam? — John R.

I’ve never been in a traffic jam LIKE THAT.  The governor should take a big hit for what happened but he’ll be out of office in a few days.  He dodged a bullet.

Happy New Year Bernie, To start the New Year please opine on the following. We have 435 Representatives in the House and an additional 100 Senators. Can you name 10 of our elected officials that you feel could sit around a table with nine other elected officials from both parties and identify a single problem facing our country and then come to a consensus conclusion and recommendation? In other words, can you name 10 elected officials out of 535 that can think on their own and try to represent their constituents. Now I will give you Joe Manchin and possibly Krysten Sinema, you need eight more. Now if you can’t, I have to ask does voting fall under the definition of insanity as penned by Albert Einstein or is just universal corruption in Washington D.C.? — Douglas C.

Without trying to name names let me put it this way:  The number of Members of Congress — House and Senate — who are willing to compromise on issues and “come to a consensus” is much smaller than it was even 10 years ago.  And even smaller still than it was 20 years ago.  Something changed along the way.    It’s not so much corruption — though I know how you mean it — as it is hyper-partisanship. And it’s another reason the American people have very little respect for Congress.

There is absolutely no proof that the Democrats stole the 2020 Presidential election. Trump’s people went to court dozens of times to contest votes, and they lost every time, including 9-0 in the Supreme Court, where Trump appointed three of the judges. But as we both know, crimes have been committed throughout history with no proof of who did what, when, and how. We’re still trying to figure out who killed John Kennedy and who fired the first shot at Fort Sumter. But one thing’s for sure; if the Democrats did do something to influence the voting illegally, and again, there’s no proof of that, it’s Donald Trump’s fault for not being a bigger crook than the Democrats. — Joe

Interesting, Joe.  First you say “there is absolutely no proof the Democrats stole the 2020 President election” but then you go on to cast doubt about whether they did steal or not.  Nice try, my friend, but Trump lost.  No one stole anything.  And Lee Harvey Oswald was the only one who fired the shot that killed JFK.  I think you’re joking about if only Trump had been a bigger crook than the Dems he might be president today — but I’m not sure you are joking.  Take care …

Bernie, This week, Tennessee state Rep. Jeremy Faison (R) was caught on video getting so upset at a high school basketball game that he stormed onto the court and tried, unsuccessfully, to pull the referee’s pants down. I have three questions:

  1. Isn’t it safe to say that Faison is a RINO squish for not getting the job done?
  2. Would you have done a story on Faison if you were still working on Real Sports?
  3. Don’t you agree that Faison can turn the incident into a political winner by insisting that the referee was a member of the Deep State who was hiding Trump-marked 2020 election ballots in his pants?

— John D

Let me address Question #3:  YES!

 


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Bernie’s Q&A: John Madden, Kimberly Potter, Alex Jones, and more! (12/31) — Premium Interactive ($4 members)

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Did Biden have his “Mission Accomplished” moment July 4th when he declared independence from coronavirus? I understood why he falsely blamed Trump for the virus back during the 2020 presidential campaign (he could lie with impunity speaking to a compliant press corps). But I don’t understand why he painted himself into a corner promising to end the virus and then declaring the aforementioned independence from the pandemic after he was elected. Do you really think he believes his own BS? — Steve R.

I think Joe Biden, a politician all his life, says things that he thinks will play with his audience. If they don’t turn out to be true … no harm no foul. Who’s going to hold him accountable? Not, for the most part, a “compliant press corps,” as you say. For the record, he did say the virus has not yet been “vanquished” — and he did caution against complacency, acknowledging that new variants still out there. But you’re right, he did, as one news report put it, “all but announced an end to the pandemic in the U.S.” Check out my column next Monday for more on this general subject.

Happy New Year early Sir Bernie—-the All-Benevolent Emperor thanks you for another year of service to the Empire.! I read that Philadelphia D.A. Larry Krasner, (a PROGRESSIVE LIBERAL DEMOCRAT BACKED BY GEORGE SOROS) is losing a lot of his attorneys for various and sundry reasons. Apparently George Soros has given over 60% of his assets away to support leftist causes and candidates. (Funny how left wingers love Soros but hate Elon Musk and the Koch Brothers, but I digress). Here’s what I can’t figure out: I would assume that someone who escaped the NAZIS would WANT others to be protected against violent thugs who destroy communities and make the citizens unsafe. I also know that he’s an old atheist who probably doesn’t have much time left on God’s green earth anyway. So—-What exactly does George Soros gain by supporting left wing progressive leaders who destroy communities and poison neighborhoods where he doesn’t reside? –“Farewell 2021” Regards from The Emperor

Soros doesn’t see it the way you do. He believes he’s helping the downtrodden. He sees a world of the oppressed and the oppressor. One of you has it right. I’ll leave it to you to figure out which one that is. Happy New Year, Your Emperor-ship.

Have you paid attention to the Kimberly Potter trial in Minneapolis? I can’t help but think that the jury gave the verdict that they did because they were concerned with the backlash from BLM and others if they ruled separately. What do you think? — Jerry G.

I think two things, Jerry. First, controversial as it may be, a guilty verdict was understandable. Though the prosecution didn’t have to charge her with first degree manslaughter. That was probably a political decision. Although what happened was clearly an accident, it was such an egregious accident that “oops, sorry” wouldn’t suffice. My second point is that I think you’re onto something regarding the potential for trouble if the jury came back with a not guilty verdict. Good chance that was on the minds of the jurors.

Thank you Bernie for the words of wisdom. We don’t always agree and yet you keep speaking and writing and I keep reading, listening, and replying. Imagine how boring it would be if we simply always agreed. Wish I could convince you that Trump is the real deal. I’ll keep trying. Keep up the good work my friend. — Thomas C.

Many thanks, Thomas for that. Keep trying … who knows, you may actually move me in your direction. Who knows, maybe I’ll even move you in my direction. Maybe? I appreciate the civility in your note.

There’s little doubt in my mind that the Biden Administration all lay their heads down at night knowing they are in over their heads, are mostly incompetent, know they have bungled decision after decision and don’t care enough or at all what the majority of Americans think about it. Every human being knows their own true worth and contribution when they lay down at night. Is there anything more dangerous than those who choose not to care how their actions impact others? As you pointed out on this [week’s] OTC, 2022 looks to be more of the same unfortunately.

So I resolve not to expect anything different from these clowns. Just like Biden said yesterday, I give up and I’m going to the beach! Pass the sunscreen… Warm regards. — Scotty G.

I’m not sure they know they’re in over their heads. They may be delusional. Which is worse: Knowing you’re not up to the job or thinking you are when you’re clearly not. More important: Where’s the beach, my friend?

I know he was in the sports division and you were in the news division, but because you and the recently deceased John Madden worked for CBS at the same time, I was wondering if you ever met the man. Even if you didn’t, do you have any impressions of him you’d like to share? — Ben G.

I did meet Madden … in Tampa … 1984 … at the Super Bowl. I interviewed him for a story I was doing for the CBS Evening News. I wish there was something memorable that came out of it, but if there was it escapes me. He showed up at the designated location, answered my dopey questions, I thanked him and we went our separate ways. As for impressions: Mine are all the obvious ones. He was a great TV personality. He understood the medium. He was both knowledgeable and entertaining. One of a kind!

Bernie, It’s been reported that on Christmas Eve, police were called to the home of far-right conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, after Jones’s wife allegedly accused him of cheating on her, and then proceeded to strike him over 20 times in the head (using her fists and a bottle). Though police reports seem to corroborate the account, and it makes sense that any physical assault on Jones would reasonably entail a large number of head-shots (based on his enormously-sized cranium), Jones’s well-known propensity to fabricate things, along with odd details on the incident, would seem to cast doubt on the official record of what happened.

For example, are we honestly supposed to believe that Jones could get someone to marry him in the first place, let alone find someone interested in having an affair with him? I’m not buying it. Doesn’t it seem more likely that this woman was a crisis actor hired by the same Deep State shadow groups who assassinated JFK, and faked the moon landing, 9/11, and the January 6th attack, to make Jones look like a ladies man in exchange for him not revealing to the world that the Earth is indeed flat? — John D.

I had not thought of ANY of that, John D. And you know why? Because you just may be crazier than Alex Jones. But hidden in your rant was a nugget … about — as you put it — the “faked moon landing.” Who told you about that? I thought I was the only one who knew that it was faked. At least that’s what Alex Jones once told me. He was with Sophia Loren at the time. Happy New Year to you John D and all the other residents of the asylum.

 


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Bernie’s Q&A: Chris Wallace, Joe Manchin, Jesse Watters, and more! (12/24) — Premium Interactive ($4 members)

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Mr. G., What in the world is Bill O’Reilly touring with and promoting Trump all about? Does Bill need the money? Why is he feeding that insatiable ego that we just need to go away? Can’t you speak with him please? –ScottyG

All good questions, Scotty. Unfortunately, no good answers.

Hello Mr Goldberg, I heard you on Bill O’Reilly equate Fox News with MSNBC AND CNN, in essence lumping all these cable news program s in one basket. I think that was wrong. Yes, you can argue that Fox News is favors Donald Trump and won’t permit anything negative to be said about him, and the exact opposite goes for MSNBC and CNN. But tell me does Fox censor news worthy items like MSNBC and CNN censored the Jussie Smollett story or does Fox news not run stories equivalent to MSNBC and CNN not covering the southern border? — Frederic N.

Fox has been called “The Trump Administration in Exile.” I think that’s a good description. All the cable news channels pander to their viewers. They all play up stories that fit the viewers (and their) biases and play down stories that don’t. You ask, “Does Fox censor newsworthy items …”?  Yes. You can watch Fox all morning and most of the rest of the day and not get any news about the House commission investigating the Jan 6 riot. You know why, Frederic? Because Fox viewers by and large don’t want to hear that kind of news. Fox has some very good hard news reporters. But the line between hard news and commentary is pretty blurry. And so let me repeat: They’re all the same to one degree or another. They’re all are in the business of business more than the business of good journalism.

First I want to wish you and your family the very best for this Holiday season, now a simple question. Did Joe Manchin on Sunday save the Democratic Party? — Douglas C.

I think he did. If that monstrosity of a spending bill had passed, Democrats would be paying the price not only for the short term inflation it would cause but also for the expensive non-essential stuff that’s in it. That said, I hope the Dems continue to hammer Manchin. I hope they continue to call him names. And I wish he says that he’s had enough and becomes a Republican.

Read the post on Chris Wallace leaving. Interesting, but the idea that leaving Fox because of Carlson to go to CNN which has Don Lemon, Brian Stelter, Cuomo until he finally got fired, and a few other crazies doesn’t seem like much of an improvement over Carlson. And the fact that Fox hosts were messaging for Trump to call off the rioters doesn’t seem like an indictment of the hosts, it seems more like they knew it was wrong and wanted it stopped. Wallace was more left than right…maybe more a reason to leave for CNN. Bret Baer is center in my opinion…if he leaves, I’ll be sad. I don’t watch the opinion shows on Fox, CNN or anywhere else. — Bob K.

You’re right, Bob, when you say CNN has its own bunch of crazies. We disagree, though, on whether it’s a good idea to try to help someone you’re supposed to be covering. Ingraham, Kilmeade and Hannity did want the riot to stop — because it was hurting Donald Trump. Did they go on the air that night and condemn Trump for allowing it to go on for quite a while before he did anything? No, they didn’t. Even opinion talking heads have to be fair. They were activists, as I said, trying to help a friend. How is that different from what Chris Cuomo did, helping his brother? Finally, more and more people are telling me what you wrote at the end of your message: That, like you, they’re no longer watching opinion shows on Fox or anyplace else. And the ratings reflect the fall off.

As to Wallace leaving for CNN, I say good riddance. “leaving for CNN” is all anyone needs to know. I don’t expect him to be lenient on Republicans, never did. But I’ve come to suspect the longtime Democrat after watching and listening to him over the last few years. And I’ve never been a Trump fan, but I have had to defend even him against the institutional forces allied against him. The seriousness of the political landscape extends far beyond one strange, ridiculous, clownish megalomaniac personality, even when said clown is or was POTUS.

As for Tucker Carlson, I did not see his special, but I did watch his hour-long show most nights. And I saw his questioning of the January 6th events and aftermath as mostly reasonable. The behavior of Democrats and the mainstream media with respect to January 6th and its portrayal is far more suspect that Carlson’s. — JT

It looks like we have vastly different opinions of Tucker Carlson, JT. He has used his show to push debunked conspiracy theories about how the FBI was behind the January 6 riots. He mocked Capitol police for testifying about their experience that day. On top of all that, he attributes the worst motives to anyone he doesn’t like. I wouldn’t wash my hands in the same sink with that guy.

Bernie, I am glad Chris walked away from Fox. He is of the few to keep his integrity. However how is any open minded conservative supposed to take anything on Fox News seriously. Or for that matter the republican officials they put on the network. When we know they are not being honest about the Big Lie and January 6th. Why should we trust them in the elections of 2022? — Douglas

You hit the proverbial nail on the head, Douglas. Nothing for me to add. I’m with you all the way, my friend.

Bernie, I have one searing memory of Wallace and that would be his failure to ask Hillary Clinton one tough question during her debate with Trump. There were any number of probing questions (her phony charity for one) he could have asked and he chose to fluff ball his way through the evening. Can’t stand the guy and he is one of the huge reasons I stopped watching Fox. — Thomas C.

I checked, Thomas, and discovered that while the debate was almost entirely about policy positions, Wallace did specifically ask (and press) Clinton about the Clinton Foundation controversy. Here’s a link.

But if you don’t like him, it’s a free country.

[Regarding your Chris Wallace column]:

  1. Don’t you just hate quotations with text left out? Here’s an example: “But they sold their souls to … Trump”. Those ellipsis (three dots) could have contained anything, for example, “they sold their souls to the powers that be despite pleading from Trump.”
  2. What became of using the word “because” in journalism? “This isn’t true, and it’s dangerous to pretend it is.” Why is it true? Who says it’s true? It’s true BECAUSE…?” The absolute worst thing about interviews these days is that the topic starts with accepted fact and consequent conclusions. Were “I” an interviewer, this person wouldn’t get past this first sentence.

— James B.

While watching interviews on TV, I find myself jumping in with “ASK ABOUT (fill in the blank.)” Too many interviewers on TV are not much more than potted plants.

When Fox’s Jesse Watters spoke at a big rightwing conference this week, he encouraged the wanna-be young “journalists” in the audience to confront Dr. Fauci in public when he’s not expecting it. Watters said: “Now you’re going for the kill shot. The kill shot with an ambush is deadly because he doesn’t see it coming. This is when you say ‘Dr. Fauci, you funded risky research at a sloppy Chinese lab, the same lab that sprung this pandemic on the world. You know why people don’t trust you, don’t you?’ Boom! He is dead! He is dead! He’s done!”

WTF is wrong with Watters? Yes, I get that he was speaking in metaphors, but as John Daly said on Twitter, he was consciously and provocatively using ‘kill’ metaphors in his encouragement of people publicly accosting Fauci (a guy hated by that crowd, who likely receives more death threats that almost anyone in the country)”. Clearly he was trying to get a rise out of people with such talk. As a respected journalist, Bernie, what do you think of how Watters talked and the phrasing he used? Did you guys ever talk about “kill shots” and “deadly ambushes” at CBS? — Ben G.

Let me answer your “WTF is wrong with Watters” question: HE’S A MORON! And no, I never used the term “kill shots” or “deadly ambushes.” Did I mention: HE’S A MORON!

Recently Sarah Silverman called out Joy Reid for her blatant lies about Ron DeSantis who is considering starting a state civilian guard unanswerable to the federal government and Joy Reid’s attempt to link this to (what else?) racism and white supremacy. In an effort to promote the truth, Sarah Silverman found herself in the crosshairs of the woke elites—-she was accused of racism of course along with being chided for correcting a Harvard educated woman. Well I must admit to feeling a bit of schadenfreude over this, since I’m told that Sarah Silverman told young Jewish voters to pressure their own grandparents into voting for Barack Obama, lest they be seen as racists themselves. Here’s what I want to know: since this is a tactic that is regularly used by the left, why did Sarah Silverman believe that it would never be used against her? Is she (and so many others on the left) THAT F—-ING BLIND that they don’t see their own being devoured by their own tactics whenever they stray out of lockstep with the woke Dunderheads?  –“Having The Shoe On The Other Foot Schadenfreude” Regards from The Emperor

They’re clueless, my Royal friend. The stuff the left pulls on conservatives never bothers them until they’re the target. Then they wake up. And let me admit that when it happens, I’m glad. I feel no sympathy for her — or anyone else on the left who has slimed conservatives — and then finds herself in the crosshairs. Too bad!

Besides Smollett, the DA who originally “prosecuted” the case, Kim Foxx should go to jail, too. She gave him a suspended sentence and 16 hours of community service stuffing envelopes in Jesse Jackson’s office. She never asked any of the questions a DA should ask, and she basically did no investigation. A recent investigation of her conduct concluded she was “responsible for a major failure of operations in dismissing charges against Smollett.” Nothing criminal, the investigation said, but maybe an ethics violation. No kidding. So much for one investigator in Chicago investigating another investigator. The city was safer under Al Capone. Probably more honest, too. — Joe B.

I’m with you Joe. When a gangster is corrupt that’s one thing. But a DA? That’s worse. But she didn’t force her way into office. She was voted in. And the people of Chicago deserve what they got. Same with the voters in NY, SF, LA and other left wing cities. No sympathy for any of them.

Bernie, great coverage of the Smollet trial’s aftermath. And it is interesting to watch, well, nothing from the liberal pie holes. That is the mode of operation for the hit and run media, the drive-bys as the late El Rushbo labeled them. What these harbingers of doom haven’t heard, nor are they listening for, is that incredibly loud sound of silence that is emanating from their lack of an audience. They have a fractional base that like the conservatives they abhor, will stick to them no matter what untruths they spew. I am reminded of my former wife’s grandmother who would be playing cards with her friends and discussing various gossip items. I asked onetime after hearing one particular outrage concerning an actor of the time where they had heard this maliciousness. She proudly said, “Why, it’s in the National Enquirer,” as if there was no way an untruth could ever be printed there. It seems reporters or anchors are following this pattern of placing pleasing the audience way above fact finding and truthfulness. Assumptions seems to have made an Ass out of, well again as you said, no one. So my question would be, given the current state of politics which I can only imagine in journalism classes these days, is there any chance to get truth somewhat back into the broadcasts, or has Gabriel sounded the trumpet? — Rod A.

Please the audience is what counts. Play up the news they want, play down or ignore the news they don’t want. The sound you’re hearing is that of Gabriel playing taps for much of the world of journalism.

Reacting to Joe Manchin’s announcement this week that he will not vote for BBB, Jennifer Rubin of WAPO proclaimed that “democracy is hanging by a thread.” Countless other members of the Democrat Party have been telling us for months that “our democracy” is in jeopardy. Bernie, this seems like a very urgent matter. Please let us know what what we can do to save America. It sounds like all will be well and freedom will again ring if we only spend another $3-5 trillion (rather paltry since the national is around 30 trillion, no?). Do you think it would help if I write to Senator Manchin and call him some nasty names? At a minimum, please help me better understand what they mean when they use the words “our democracy.” Wishing you and all the regulars a Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy 2022. — Mike F.

Funny and serious at the same time. Nice, Mike. The sky is always falling to people who don’t get their way — especially if they also hate Donald Trump. I wouldn’t lose any sleep. Democracy will be around longer than Jennifer Rubin. And while we’re talking about her … I’m constantly puzzled by how some genuine conservatives have moved so far to the left in the Trump and post-Trump era. I understand why they don’t like Trump. I understand why they’ve abandoned the GOP. But why they have become MSNBC-type lefties leaves me with a whole bunch of questions. Among them: Can raw hatred of Donald Trump make someone (like Ms. Rubin) abandon everything she believed about politics and political philosophy? Does he have such a strong hold on them so that they’ve moved from hard right to hard left? I’m thinking yes and yes.

Bernie, this is how Fox promoted Jesse Watters’ now infamous speech this week, where he used a bunch of assassination metaphors in his encouragement of people ambush-interviewing Dr. Fauci, and sending their videos to Fox News:

Are you disappointed that the controversial “kill shot” rhetoric has distracted from what was assuredly valuable journalistic advice from someone with Watters’ highly-impressive journalistic background? After all, who can forget his award-winning investigative reports on The O’Reilly Factor, where he interviewed women in bikinis on spring break, mocked woke activists, and pressed retail employees about saying “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas”? He has so much left to teach! — John D.

As I mentioned earlier in the Q & A: Jesse Watters is a MORON. And let me add … who works for other MORONS.

 


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