“Free at last, free at last, thank God Almighty, I’m free at last!” I’m talking about the backoffice celebrations by the talking heads at Fox News, not the eloquence of Martin Luther King and other civil rights heroes. It must have been extremely disconcerting, not to mention exhausting, for the Foxers to have to defend the indefensible throughout the Trump regime. For the last 3 ½ years this GOP house organ has had to excuse, and even stand up for, the ridiculous tweets, the outright nativism and bigotry, but even worse, the Trumpian reluctance to condemn Putin’s thugocracy, the brief love affair with Kim Jong Un, the budget-busting initiatives springing from the worst impulses of a sleazy developer, the absurd predictions about the pandemic, the “manliness” of disdaining masks, the contempt for science, the likely-illegal payments to prostitutes, and so on. Now Hannity, Carlson, Ingraham, Levin, Watters, Hilton, Gorka et al can return to a more familiar trope – the Republicans are the party of family values and personal responsibility, in contrast to the Democrats, who constitute the party of Socialism, welfare queens and riots.
Once Mr. Trump exits, the hypocrisy will be less pronounced; unfortunately, abortion will continue to roil the waters. And the “progressive” left, which is really not progressive, will continue to afford Fox with inviting targets. It still astounds that the mayors of Portland and Seattle did not move swiftly to reassert community values of nonviolence and public safety. In so doing they furnished great fodder for the Trump media blitz in the last weeks before the election. We can expect to see those videos well into 2022, if not 2024. It just goes to show that “the gene pool has no lifeguard.”