Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Transcript – Why do they need to broker a truce? Does this have anything to do with electing a solemn constitutionalist as president? That’s another thing that bothers me about all this. Check out today’s transcript for the rest….
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Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: Gabriel Sherman, New York Daily News:
In the fallout since the first GOP debate, Fox News chairman Roger Ailes has found himself caught between Donald Trump, who has the full backing of Fox’s misogynist audience, and Megyn Kelly, the star anchor whom Ailes has nurtured and sees as the key to reaching younger viewers.
Mike: I was chuckling when I read this last night, “Fox’s misogynistic audience.” How many people even know what the term misogyny, how it is supposed to be
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classically applied? Basically what he’s saying is that the audience that watches Fox News likes beating women up or seeing women in pain. Depending on how we define pain, if we define pain as the end result visited upon women as a result of their immodest dress and immodest behavior, which the same audience has resoundingly approved of and applauds loudly, then the writer has a point. More on that in a moment.
For a few days, Ailes didn’t know how to handle Trump’s full-throated attack on Kelly, who accused Trump of sexism during the debate. Eventually, as I reported yesterday, he made the same choice he always does: follow the ratings, and mend fences with Trump. But that process has meant that Fox has had to mute its defense of Kelly, who is now watching uneasily as the Fox audience turns on her: According to one high-level source, Kelly has told Fox producers that she’s been getting death threats from Trump supporters.
While Trump barnstormed rival media outlets over the last few days, dissing Kelly and Fox at virtually every turn, Ailes remained surprisingly restrained in his response, even after Trump told CNN on Friday that Kelly had “blood coming out of her wherever” during the debate. Paralyzed by the volume of pro-Trump emails from Fox’s loyal viewers, Ailes’s only statement, released a day after the debate, said that he was “extremely proud of all of the moderators.” Fox’s famously aggressive PR apparatus has not gone after Trump to defend Kelly, and although Kelly’s executive producer Tom Lowell did send out an email to colleagues thanking them for their support in recent days, that support has been private.
Trump is now back in Fox’s fold, but the lengths that Ailes went to in order to win Trump back revealed a rare moment of weakness for the Fox chief. Since Trump’s “blood” comment on Friday, some Fox executives have wanted Ailes to personally call Trump and broker a truce.
Mike: Why do they need to broker a truce? Does this have anything to do with electing a solemn constitutionalist as president? That’s another thing that bothers me about all this. All of you alleged, fake conservatives out there that have been droning on endlessly about, [mocking] “All we got to do is get back to the Constitution.” How many of you have even pondered or searched for whether or not Mr. Trump has even read the darn thing? It matters not, does it? [mocking] “He’s the next Reagan, you idiot. We love him because he’s like Reagan.” That is an insult of grave proportions to Ronald Wilson Reagan. I can explain that in greater detail but let me finish the story. Back to Gabriel Sherman of the New York Daily News:
But, according to a Fox source, Ailes and his lawyer Peter Johnson Jr. felt that calling Trump was a risk they couldn’t take, given Trump’s erratic behavior on the campaign trail. What if Trump leaked the conversation on Twitter like he did with Lindsey Graham’s cell-phone number?
Ailes’s unwillingness to pick up the phone meant that Fox was flying blind. “They didn’t know what Trump was thinking,” one source explained. It was left to emissaries to try and discern Trump’s next move. But, after Trump told Sean Hannity in a weekend phone call that he was “never doing Fox again,” appeared on four non-Fox public-affairs shows on Sunday, and did interviews with Today and Morning Joe on Monday, Ailes raised the white flag and picked up the phone on Monday morning. “Roger wanted a friendly relationship,” the source explained.
Mike: This is why I asked the question: Why do we watch these debates? I watch them at MikeChurch.com to have fun with you guys, and so that we can all pad our pro-republican, pro-Christian, pro-constitutional order knowledges. It’s fun. People like doing this. I would watch them were I to think that they were actually serious or were I to think that there were actually attempts to seriously address the solemn issues that we face, but I know that they’re not. I know that the men that are jockeying for the position of wishing to do so don’t wish to do so. A classic paradox is it not? Back to the story:
Ailes offered Trump the chance to do a special on Kelly’s prime-time show to clear the air — an offer Trump flatly refused. “Donald was sufficiently pissed off that there was no way that was happening,” a person familiar with the call told me. According to the source, Trump’s ire was especially stoked after Howard Stern called to tell him about a 2010 interview in which Kelly joked about her breasts and her husband’s penis. Ailes offered other shows, and Trump agreed to appear on Fox and Friends and Hannity, two venues that have been loyal boosters of his candidacy.
Ailes’s next order of business was getting Trump to disarm publicly. According to a source briefed on the negotiations, Ailes called Trump “multiple” times yesterday morning “begging” him to tweet out that they had made peace. Trump refused at first, but finally consented.
Mike: Isn’t this amazing? Public policy by tweet. I suppose I could reduce down to 142 characters the grim state of affairs of our little constitutional order, what’s left of it, or our Christian cultural order, or what’s left of it, but I’d rather not.
“Roger Ailes just called,” he tweeted at 10:35 a.m. yesterday. “He is a great guy & assures me that ‘Trump’ will be treated fairly on @FoxNews. His word is always good!” Last night, Ailes put his own spin on it and released a statement. “We had a blunt but cordial conversation and the air has been cleared,” he said, adding that Kelly is a “brilliant journalist.” For her part, Kelly addressed the controversy only briefly on her show, saying simply: “I certainly will not apologize for doing good journalism.”
This morning, Ailes got his wish: Trump returned with a chatty segment on Fox and Friends. “I’m glad we’re friends again,” co-host Steve Doocy said at the opening of the segment. “We’ve always been friends,” Trump replied, disingenuously.
But resecuring Trump access could prove to be a temporary victory for Ailes. Having backed down to the GOP front-runner and all but sacrificed one of his biggest stars to appease the conservative base — a.k.a. Fox viewers — Ailes has set a dangerous precedent. The message is clear: Fox reports, but the audience decides.
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Mike: Again, alternate realities. There is no reality. There certainly is no truth. We might broadcast something today and then say: Well, that was true. Well, it wasn’t true, but that’s what we thought yesterday. That was our buddy yesterday, but he’s not our buddy anymore. Folks, if you’re still in the dark, if you still actually believed that this news network was somehow on your side and your ally to take back what has been stolen from Christendom and Christendom’s ancestors, how do you reconcile this? There is no way to reconcile it. The only way you can reconcile this is to deny that that’s what’s happening. This is not about electing presidents. It’s not about fixing anything. It’s not about repairing damage to the constitutional or the cultural or moral order. It’s about selling television advertisements. You need to rely on that corrupt culture in order to do so. As a matter of fact, I’d say you need to expand it because the more it expands, the more you have to cover it. The more outrage — wait a minute, it’s not outrage anymore. Now it’s just fascination. Outrage his now turned to entertainment. I’m not going to spend very much time defending Ms. Kelly here, for reasons I’ve already stated. Go to MikeChurch.com and read them for yourself.
End Mike Church Show Transcript