“Mr. Trump, did you invite the Clintons to your wedding as a prank, so they would be forced to watch Rosie O’Donnell eat?”
If I recall correctly, that is one question the Fox News panel, Rupert Murdoch’s hit squad, failed to ask their favorite target at the first GOP presidential debate last week.
The Clintons haven’t said, but they too may have thought that Rosie ate like a pig. Hillary is unlikely to say so now, because it has become her role, according to Fox anchor Megyn (Roots) Kelly, to use Trump’s opinion of the chubby, boorish actress as evidence that he is perpetuating the illusory war on women.
Fox commentators have been laughing off the notion of a war on women for years now, calling it a phony concoction of the Democratic propagandists. But evidently it can, upon occasion, serve a useful purpose, even for Fox. Like bringing down Donald Trump.
Things began to smell fishy from the very start of the debate, when all ten top-seeded GOP candidates were instructed by the Fox panel to raise their hands if they were unwilling to pledge to support whichever presidential candidate wins the GOP nomination. This was aimed squarely at Trump, who had been muttering now and then about a possible run as a third-party candidate. Sure enough, only Trump raised his hand.
If there had been an actual journalist on the Fox panel, he would have followed up immediately with the question: “Which of these other candidates do you consider unworthy of your support?” Instead, the panel simply let Trump squirm for a while, then moved on.
I like the format in which political candidates are asked to raise their hands, rather than speak. It is visually more interesting than watching a talking head talk. Visually interesting is right up Fox’s alley. Whenever a tree falls in an American urban neighborhood, you can count on Fox to show you a video of the event. If Iran were to declare war on the United States at the very moment that a tree fell in Blooming Grove, Ohio, Fox would show you the tree first, and only then the Ayatollah.
But I digress.
How about if we draft a list of questions to be directed at the Fox panel, that require them to do no more than raise their hands?
Ms. Kelly, do you think that you, Rosie O’Donnell and other women who put themselves forward as public figures, with the prerogative of attacking other public figures, should be treated like fragile, Southern Belles by your victims? If yes, raise your hand. The one that isn’t holding the concealed dagger.
Mr. Wallace, do you really think you have enough business acumen to ask a billionaire real-estate tycoon to justify the financial and legal methods he uses to keep his business afloat? Or are you just content to take a cheap shot that appeals to your most gullible viewers — and your boss? Left hand for choice number one, right hand for choice number two.
All of you: As supposed journalists, have you figured out yet that the GOP rank and file is signaling, in the polls and in public demonstrations, that it wants something radically different this time? That it is fed up with electing people to Congress who fail to fulfill their promises, that it is fed up with losing elections with meek, genteel establishment candidates who haven’t the guts to speak the truth for fear of — what? Losing?
If you haven’t figured this out, raise whichever hand you choose, and go find some other job.