Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Fox News’ Roger Ailes Calls Trump ‘Disturbing’

Chris Christie and Donald Trump have a lot in common. They’re both intellectually challenged, over-entitled/-indulged/-enabled and heavily insecure. They’re both bullies with an unhealthy lust for absolute power, attention and permission to do what they want, say what they want, when they want. Both are a seething mass of neuroses that multiplies like a group of cancer cells in the pancreas and neither can conceive of the possibility that their adoring audience might tire of them or that they might meet somebody who can take them down.

Sociopaths of this sort always amass a lot of rope. An can’t resist hanging themselves. Their fathomless insecurity can never be sated; the more they get the more they crave and the less self-control they have. Pushing boundaries is the drug for them. The more attention they get the more they truly believe they’re infallible, and the more reckless they become.

Christie destroyed his political career when he was close to the top of his game. Now the Donald, although much more potent and sinister than Christie and with a huge fan base and a real political chance, is slipping on the banana skin of his own ego.

A few weeks ago at the first Republican debate, Fox News reporter Megyn Kelly asked him some straightforward questions about his attitude and treatment of women. Being confronted always hits a nerve with him and he blew a fuse, insulting Kelly then and afterwards for days on Twitter, causing an uproar. Kelly wasn’t intimidated by Trump and didn’t back down. She’s a star at Fox News with her own big fan base and influence. 

But Fox News Top Dog Roger Ailes made peace with Trump. Of course he did. Trump is the best thing since sliced bread for Fox. Kelly went on unexpected leave for eleven days and everything settled down.

So Trump got away with it, but not without damage under the surface , which is the dangerous kind. And if you touch the nerve of a egotist with the kinds of living, breathing neuroses that dominate Trump they can’t forget. He couldn’t leave it alone.

Kelly got back from vacation. Out of the blue Trump started tweeting rank insults about her again, calling her a bimbo and a lousy journalist. Roger Ailes didn’t try to make peace this time. His official response was; “Donald Trump’s surprise and open attack on Megyn Kelly during her show last night is as unacceptable as it is disturbing.” He went on to say that FOX News supports and values the work that Kelly does in asking candidates questions they find difficult to answer and that Trump should apologize.

The word ‘disturbing’ is the one Trump should be careful of. The inference is that he’s not firing on all cylinders. Well hello. Of course this all could be a ploy by Ailes to keep the war alive because of its impact on ratings. But maybe it's not. If Fox withdraws its coverage of Trump can he survive?

Without the kind of glutinous media attention Fox provides, people will forget him. He’ll get more and more reckless and obnoxious to try and get their attention back. And the show’s over, folks.

That’s not all. A few days ago Trump held a press conference in Iowa. When Emmy Award-winning journalist Jorge Ramos asked an inconvenient question without being selected—because Trump refused to select him—Trump wouldn’t answer and said, “Excuse me, sit down, you weren’t called, sit down. Sit down. Sit down.” Ramos refused to sit or be silenced. He wasn’t shouting or screaming or being unreasonable, he was simple speaking, in a very even tone. Trump told him to go back to Univision, addressing him like a man who isn’t an animal-lover would command a dog.

The incident was captured on video, of course. Trump looked over to the side, nodded his head to somebody and said “Go ahead”. A huge security guard walked behind him and ‘escorted’ Ramos out the room. He went protesting, but again still not shouting or screaming. The man has dignity.

Something Trump doesn’t know the meaning of. On being asked why Ramos was removed  he said “I don’t know really much about him. I don’t believe I’ve ever met him—except he started screaming—I didn’t escort him out; you’ll have to talk to security, whoever security is…”

Jorge Ramos, who works for the Spanish language channel Univision, made the cover of Time Magazine’s World’s Most Influential People Issue. He came back in 15 minutes later and jousted with Trump, neither giving way.

Trump has already lost 75% of the Latino vote with his racist ranting about all Mexicans being rapists and thugs and wanting to deport everybody who’s undocumented regardless of how it shatters even children’s lives. And then there’s the Wall… Clearly he believes he can win without the Latino vote. But then, he believes he could strong-arm Iran into signing an agreement that makes them absolute slaves to America and that he could bomb the whole of ISIL out of existence.

The man's a lunatic. He’d be entertaining if he weren’t so ugly. If he hadn’t destroyed so many lives and done it with such pleasure and ease. Nothing entertaining about that.

But it is fascinating to watch sociopaths take themselves down. That it always happens gives me faith in being human. We’re not built to abuse others so when somebody does they can’t sustain the internal culture that drives their abuse. Along the path of their own destruction, though, they take an awful lot of people down with them. That’s the hard part. 

I must say, though, for Roger Ailes to call Trump 'disturbing' is more than a little ironic. What a circus.