Fox Corp. CEO Lachlan Murdoch is blowing smoke when he thinks Fox News is going to thrive as the loyal opposition to the Biden administration, as MSNBC did during the Trump White House.
Here is a news flash for Lachlan: “Sleepy Joe” is no match for the 24/7 outrage, distort, attack, distract and deny machine that just thankfully exited Washington for the Sunshine State, where he plots revenge and charts a political comeback.
And then there is the inconvenient fact that Biden has done more good for America during his first 50 days in office than Trump “accomplished” in four years.
His $1.9T American Rescue Plan is a winner, approved by 70 percent of the US, according to Pew Research, and 41 percent of Republicans and GOP-leaning independents.
The president also scores high marks for his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccine rollout. COVID-19 message received by America: Joe Cares. Don Didn’t.
The Conservative Political Action Conference, a bash favored by fire-breathing right-wingers, drove home the point that Uncle Joe just doesn’t generate outrage—either real or feigned.
“I can’t give the Biden stuff away,” said MAGA merchandise vendor David Solomon, who was trying to unload t-shirts with images of the president with a Hitler-style mustache and the message “Not my dictator.”
Lachlan should trash the loyal opposition bit.
What he needs is a Howard “Mad as Hell” Beale-type to energize a Fox World that is desperate to be entertained. Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity just don’t cut it. They are yesterday’s news.
Dr. Seuss and Mr. Potato Head are fun cancel-culture tidbits, but where is the raw meat that Foxers are accustomed to chomp on?
What would Lachlan’s dad, Rupert, do? Since “Network’s” Beale is not available, Rupe should return Piers Morgan, who worked for a bunch of Murdoch newspapers during the ’80s and `90s, back into the fold.
Morgan, who just stormed off the “Good Morning Britain” set and quit the hosting job after he launched a fierce tirade against Meghan Markle, would ignite Fox News.
He did flop in America in 2014 after a three-year run at CNN, which hired him to succeed Larry King. But that was during the pre-Trumpian age when showmanship and outrage were not yet keys to TV success.
Lachlan, who reportedly has his eye on sports betting as a growth engine at Fox Corp. could accept wagers on when Piers would blow and storm off the TV set.
Would he go full Mount Vesuvius, or maybe more like a Mount Saint Helens eruption? It would be must-see TV and a ratings smash.
A bonus: Morgan does have ties with Trump. He was a 2008 winner in the celebrity round of “The Apprentice.”
The former president could very well sign on as a fill-in for Morgan or co-host the program. It would be a great platform for the currently deplatformed ex-tweeter-in-chief.
Outgoing New York governor Andrew Cuomo received another blow to his already battered image when Crown Books decided to stop promoting his “American Crisis: Leadership Lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic.” Get the book while it is still on the shelf.
The Penguin Random House division has no plans to reprint the Cuomo Crisis or issue it in paperback form due to the probe into whether the governor underestimated nursing home deaths from COVID-19.
That investigation undermines the entire rationale of “American Crisis,” which the publisher rushed into print.
Released Oct. 13, Cuomo’s book apparently has sold about 50K copies though I haven't seen a single one being read on the subway.
His financial disclosure statement due May 15 will show the amount of the advance that the governor received from Crown. It reportedly is in the low-to-mid seven-figure range.
One sad note on the whole sordid Cuomo affair: a good chunk of the proceeds of American Crisis was supposed to go to a COVID-19-related charity group.
Cuomo's sexual harassment crisis torpedoed both book sales and donations. Whatever the outcome of Crisis II, you can bet the governor won't be writing another book any time soon.
March 11 is the one-year anniversary of Tom Hanks revealing that he and wife, Rita, received positive tests for COVID-19.
“We Hanks will be tested, observed, and isolated for as long as public health and safety requires. Not much more to it than a one-day-at-a-time approach, no,” they said in a statement.
Vanity Fair calls Hanks the “avatar of our pandemic year.” If “America’s dad” caught the virus, we all should watch out.
“The power of Hanks’s diagnosis was partly the timing—it was the same time that the NBA suddenly shut down its season and that Donald Trump gave an Oval Office address announcing a European travel ban.” wrote Katey Rich. "But it would have been hard to engineer a more accessible, relatable celebrity coming down with the virus early and making everyone pay attention. It wasn’t logical, but it felt true—if Tom Hanks could get it, anyone could.”
Rich sees something Forrest Gumpian about Hanks’s relationship to COVID-19.
The actor got sick at the very beginning of the pandemic, recovered in public to show that we could get through it, and served as master of ceremonies for the inauguration of a president who promised to end the pandemic.
As Forrest would say: “My mama always said you’ve got to put the past behind you before you can move on.”