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Sunday
Mar192017

POLITICS/MEDIA (National, International): President Donald Trump, right-wing media, facts? "news"?: "Trump's media diet causes global heartburn" ....  

* POLITICO (Matthew Nussbaum):  "Trump's media diet causes global heartburn" - "The president and his aides' habit of ripping from right-wing media is offending foreign allies and flummoxing fellow Republicans" - From POLITICO:

President Donald Trump’s habit of repeating controversial claims from conservative media outlets — and refusing to apologize when he’s called out for a lack of evidence — is repeatedly landing the White House in hot water, irritating Republicans and alienating foreign allies.

The White House touched off an international incident this week when press secretary Sean Spicer, berating reporters during the briefing on Thursday, cited comments from a Fox News commentator who accused former President Barack Obama of using the British spy agency GCHQ to surveil Trump Tower.

The Brits were not pleased. The typically close-lipped British spy agency fired off a strongly worded statement, calling the allegation “utterly ridiculous.” The White House had to try to calm irate British diplomats, with Spicer and national security adviser H.R. McMaster getting an earful from British officials.

It was hardly an isolated incident. Trump has racked up a series of scandals that have sprung from his apparently voracious consumption of conservative media, both from watching Fox News and from aides sharing with him reports from Breitbart and other right-wing outlets. And as the fallout has spread each time, Trump has refused to admit any wrongdoing.

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Especially worrisome, to many, is Trump’s seeming lack of desire to distinguish myth from fact. “Donald Trump, like millions of Americans, is susceptible to conspiracy theories,” said Douglas Brinkley, a presidential historian at Rice University. “He tends to just pick things up from right-wing talk radio and the alt-right if it fits his agenda of the day.” “We’ve never had a president operate like this. The long-term damage is you’re going to get just ravaged in history,” Brinkley added.

But for many, especially on the right, Trump’s and the White House’s claims carry weight, whether backed up by evidence or not ................