Separation of Powers: Trump’s Loose Grasp of Basic Civics

Donald Trump and civics - civic ignorance is dangerous

Following a U.S. District judge’s decision to block his controversial sanctuary cities executive order, Donald Trump (and many of his surrogates, supporters and right-wing media mouthpieces) lashed out questioning the very constitutional foundations that keep government power in check. His criticism is the latest in a long line of commentary aimed at delegitimizing the constitutional role of the Judiciary. Trump’s Reaction “First the Ninth Circuit rules […]

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O’Reilly’s Replacement: A Look at Tucker Carlson

Bill O'Reilly and Tucker Carlson

With news that Bill O’Reilly is official out at Fox News following the loss of substantial advertising dollars, boycotts, and a new accusation of sexual harassment this week, Fox announced who will lead the network’s opinion mantle going forward: Tucker Carlson. We’ve covered Carlson extensively over the years from his promotion of statutory rape of boys to stumping for the tobacco industry. This […]

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Cambridge Analytica: It’s Much More Than Just Fake News

This is the time of year when my students–graduate and undergraduate–present the results of their research projects to their classmates (and, of course, me). One of my better undergraduate students focused upon the legal implications of the increasing use of household “personal assistants”–those sort of “Siri for home use” voice-activated electronic devices like Amazon’s “Echo.” In addition to detailing the […]

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The Tide Is Turning: Chaffetz, Ossoff, & O’Reilly

Tide Turning: Chaffetz, O’Reilly, Ossoff

Signs began emerging over the last few days that the tide may be turning against the fringe conservative takeover that started several years ago with the influx of Tea Party politicians. What began on November 9, 2016 as loosely-organized outrage morphed into a well-organized resistance with representation in literally every district in the nation (red and blue alike). That reactionary outrage changed again though […]

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Encouraging Signs: The Proliferating Resistance

Rubber, Meet Road: Activism & Resistance to Trump - #NOTMYPRESIDENT

Doctors and psychologists are reporting spikes in depression and other psychosomatic responses among the general citizenry in response to the daily reports of dysfunction, corruption and regression in Washington. Those responses are understandable. But as I keep reminding myself, the news isn’t all bad. We are seeing a genuine resurgence of civic engagement at a level I have never previously […]

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Genesis of a Conspiracy Theory: The Susan Rice “Story”

Susan Rice

Over the last few days a conspiracy theory (promulgated by one of the same ‘fake news’ purveyors that helped create and promote “Pizzagate”) has gone mainstream thanks in part to conservative media’s failure to check sources and ask questions before publishing. That story revolves around former national security adviser Susan Rice requesting to “unmask” the identities of U.S. citizens in raw intelligence reports […]

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False Equivalence & Media: No, They Don’t “All” Do It

breitbart media

Every parent has heard a child respond to a scolding with “Everybody does it.” When it’s children trying to evade responsibility, we see through that excuse pretty easily. When adults engage in such evasions, when they engage in “false equivalency argumentation,” we seem to be more gullible. That has been especially true in politics, where complaints about political polarization and […]

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Tomi Lahren’s “Evolution” on Abortion Sparks Suspension

Tomi Lahren on The View

After she espoused pro-choice beliefs on The View last week, The Blaze commentator and professionally aggrieved white person Tomi Lahren found herself at odds with her conservative co-workers. Though Glenn Beck argued he would never suppress an employee’s opinions on abortion even if they contradict his own, Lahren’s portrayal of pro-choice conservatives as hypocrites took it a step too far. The remarks that sparked fury across […]

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Far-Right Media Part of FBI Russia Investigation

Breitbart & Infowars - far-right media

As a part of their investigation into the potential links between America and Russia in Russia’s attack on the 2016 presidential elections, the FBI is reportedly also looking at far-right media’s role in assisting Russian bots and trolls in disseminating propaganda promoted and often produced by Russian sources. Two prominent conservative outlets – Breitbart and Infowars – are named as possible co-conspirators. At the heart […]

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Maddow, Trump’s Taxes & Investigative Journalism

Rachel Maddow, Trump's 2005 tax returns and investigative reporting

Following Rachel Maddow’s well-watched ‘tax return’ reveal show earlier this week, many on both sides of the aisle have criticized the narrative-based MSNBC journalist for “over-hyping” a non-story. Those who’ve tuned into Maddow’s investigative reporting over the last several weeks tend to disagree. Here’s why. Much like Watergate, the investigation into Trump’s various conflicts of interest, ties with Russia, and other potentially impeachable offenses […]

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