NAUSEATING: Fox News Absolves Cop Killer Of Responsibility For Murders

Conservatives have long portrayed themselves as the voices of personal responsibility. They insist that the traditional values encompassed by patriotism and faith demand that individuals be accountable for their actions. But when it comes to the brutal assassination of two New York police officers, Fox News exploits the tragedy to lay the blame on innocent people that they regard as political adversaries.

Fox Nation

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The blinding hatred that Fox News has for New York Mayor Bill De Blasio and Al Sharpton doesn’t justify splashing the blood of dead officers on people who had no part in their demise. Other cretinous pundits have gone so far as to indict President Obama for this horror. The only thing that sort of vile and false condemnation achieves is to reveal the rancid bigotry of the accuser.

The butcher who assassinated two NYPD officers yesterday was a deeply disturbed and violent man with a long record of criminality. And despite news reports that sensationalized a few comments on social media that referenced Eric Garner and Michael Brown, his motives are still not clear. He may indeed have had opinions as to the injustices in those cases (as did millions of righteous Americans), but it is impossible to spin his shooting of his girlfriend in Baltimore prior to traveling to New York as part of a vendetta against the police. Plainly there is something else that is darkly lurking beneath the surface of this still unfolding drama.

One thing for certain is that the only person responsible for the murders is the perpetrator. It is wholly inappropriate to shift the blame to others who are just as repulsed by this as those feverishly pointing their sanctimonious fingers in other directions. That sort of flailing rebuke not only slanders the targets, it pardons the guilty. And it is particularly disgusting when the intent is such a brazen act of partisan politics.

You have to wonder why there was no similar condemnation of the treasonous Tea Party brigades that flocked to Nevada to defend tax cheat Cliven Bundy. Among their ranks were a couple who later went to Las Vegas and executed two police officers as they ate their lunch in a diner. The Tea Party cop killers failed to meet the Fox News criteria for condemnation because they were a white, Christian couple from Indiana. Consequently, Fox quickly dropped the story without any sermonizing about responsibility.

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On the other hand, right-wingers were quick to mock Garner and Brown, for whom rallying cries reflected their final moments with utterances of “Hands up, don’t shoot,” and “I can’t breathe.” These unintentional epitaphs became fodder for the conservative martinets of virtue to disregard the human tragedies and shift the blame to vague criticisms of black culture, families, and values. The spokesmen for these deliberate distractions were paraded across Fox News along with the absurd and insensitive notion that the victims caused their own deaths. The conservative viewpoint was that responsibility for their fates was their own and that the people protesting ought to accept that as a fact.

Now, suddenly, responsibility is no longer attributable to an obvious offender, but is shamelessly cast on perceived enemies. It’s such a Christian thing to do in this season of peace and goodwill. And it’s just another hypocrisy by malicious jackasses who care more about their own spiteful prejudices than the very real losses suffered by both police officers and citizens whose lives are stolen too soon and without reason.

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Obama’s War On Men: Media Rattled By Women Reporters At Press Conference

President Obama held his last press conference (CSPAN video here) for 2014 on Friday. It being a volatile time in the world there were questions that reflected the many serious issues facing the nation and the world. They spanned from North Korea to Cuba to tax reform to Keystone XL to race relations. But you’ll never guess what the media focused on at the conclusion of the affair.

Fox Nation

Apparently, the breaking news that sprung out of the press conference was that Obama only called on women journalists. That fact trumped everything else that was said about the other major issues of the day. The very first comment by Gretchen Carlson of Fox News after the event ended was about the gender makeup of the questioners. She also found it curious that Obama didn’t call on any reporters in the first row where the TV network correspondents sit.

Funny, I don’t recall ever hearing anybody take note that only men asked questions in prior press conferences. Particularly back when there weren’t any women at all in the White House press corps (with the exception of Helen Thomas). But for some reason this was regarded as newsworthy and even historic.

There was a clear implication that Obama had deliberately orchestrated this in order to advance his “War on Men.” Plus, the pundit class seems to believe that women would ask less confrontational questions. That’s an opinion that also extends to the reporters sitting behind the network stars in the first row.

To be fair, it wasn’t just Fox News. Other networks and numerous print news outlets made the same observation. But what sets Fox apart are the comments on their Fox Nation website that castigate this “gender discrimination” as more proof that Obama is weak, or gay, or committed to destroying God’s natural order of white, male, Christian supremacy. And that ugliness ought to be more newsworthy than the gender scoring that the self-obsessed media is engaging in.


A Tip Of The Hat To The Now Immortal Stephen Colbert

The moment that America was dreading has come. And while parting is said to be a sweet sorrow, the finale of Stephen Colbert’s Colbert Report leaves open the possibility of a future meeting. In the meantime we will need to console ourselves with our memories of the past and our hopes for a “Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow.”

Colbert’s send off included a segment of his take off on Bill O’Reilly’s Talking Points Memo that Colbert transformed into “The Word.” The premise of the piece titled “Same to you, pal,” was his observation that nothing much has changed in the nine years that he has been doing the show. But no matter the sly references to ongoing wars and political debates, things definitely won’t be the same. There was a Colbert Report then, but there isn’t one now. That’s a big difference.

Stephen Colbert

Colbert was much more than a comedian, more than a satirist, more than a late night talk show host, and more than a commentator on contemporary culture. What set his program apart from any that had come before it was the way he integrated his fake persona into real life. It wasn’t good enough to throw punch lines at society’s targets. That would have been way too easy. Colbert interacted with them, and in doing so, made points that could not have been made any other way.

For instance, when he appeared at the White House Correspondent’s Dinner in 2006, he came in character. He broiled both President Bush (who was sitting a few feet away) and the entire audience of media elites. He noted that he was “appalled to be surrounded by the liberal media that is destroying America, with the exception of Fox News. Fox News gives you both sides of every story: the president’s side, and the vice president’s side.” But the coup de grace was the indictment he served up in the form of a tribute (one of his specialties):

“Over the last five years you people were so good — over tax cuts, WMD intelligence, the effect of global warming. We Americans didn’t want to know, and you had the courtesy not to try to find out. Those were good times, as far as we knew.

“But, listen, let’s review the rules. Here’s how it works: the president makes decisions. He’s the Decider. The press secretary announces those decisions, and you people of the press type those decisions down. Make, announce, type. Just put ‘em through a spell check and go home. Get to know your family again. Make love to your wife. Write that novel you got kicking around in your head. You know, the one about the intrepid Washington reporter with the courage to stand up to the administration. You know – fiction.”

The “journalists” in the audience (along with such notable guests as Morgan Fairchild, Tommy Lasorda, Mitt Romney, Anna Kornikova, and “Dancing With the Stars” winner Drew Lachey) were caught in a frozen gasp as they tried to comprehend what just took place. Many of them rushed home to pen bitter criticisms of Colbert’s performance that they regarded as unfunny. But that didn’t salve their woulds.

Colbert also transported himself into Congress, again in character, as he lobbied on behalf of migrant farm workers. As usual, his shtick was as serious as it was humorous. When asked by Rep. Judy Chu why he chose to address this issue he said that…

“I like talking about people that don’t have any power. And it seems like one of the least powerful people in the United States are migrant workers who come and do our work, but don’t have any rights as a result. Yet we still invite them to come here, and at the same time ask them to leave.”

When Colbert decided to do a piece on how Super PACs allow politicians to skirt campaign financing laws and enrich themselves without any reasonable oversight, he didn’t just rant on television about it. He started his own very real Super PAC, Americans for a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow. It raised more than a million dollars that was donated to charity.

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There is so much more that could be recalled here, including the historic event in Washington, D.C. with his friend and producer, Jon Stewart: The Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear. It was a biting satire of Glenn Beck’s lame Restoring Honor rally, from a man who has never demonstrated any. But the best way to remember the Colbert Report is by letting the show speak for itself. So here is one of my favorite segments that skewers Glenn Beck’s debut on Fox News by asking “How far up your own ass are you willing to go?”

Colbert’s finale also saw him slaying the Grim Reaper, thus making himself immortal. So there may be more to come. At least we can look forward to Colbert’s return to television as the host of CBS’s The Late Show, succeeding David Letterman. You can rest assured that he will revolutionize the genre, as he did with the Colbert Report. Till then we will have to be satisfied with the bittersweet farewell he gave on his final program. The ending featured a cast of dozens of former guests and friends of the show singing the song “We’ll Meet Again.” But you have to wonder whether that selection was a wily reference to the ending of the film Dr. Stangelove, where the song had an ironic twist.


So You Thought President Obama Would Be A Lame Duck, Did You?

Six weeks ago an election concluded that brought what every Republican, and many Democrats, thought was the deathblow for the Obama administration. There was no phrase that was uttered more often than “Lame Duck” as pundits rushed to write the epitaph of Obama’s presidency and agenda. They were convinced that the Obama era was dead and, with apologies to Monty Python, it had…

“…passed on. It is no more. It has ceased to be. It’s expired and gone to meet it’s maker. It’s a stiff. Bereft of life. It rests in peace. It’s pushing up the daisies. It’s metabolic processes are now history. It’s off the twig. It’s kicked the bucket. It’s shuffled off it’s mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the bleeding choir invisible. This is an ex-presidency.”

Obama Lame Duck

Well, in the subsequent forty-two days the President has demonstrated a stubborn resistance to complying with the conventional wisdom. He has defied his critics’ forecasts of an untimely demise, as well as their conviction that he is incapable of leadership. Here is a brief summary of some of the achievements that have come to pass since November 5, 2014, beginning with an historic announcement today:

  • Normalizing relations with Cuba.
  • Deferring deportation for certain undocumented immigrants.
  • Passage of a spending bill that averts another government shutdown.
  • Confirmation of his Surgeon General nominee.
  • Confirmation of twenty-seven federal judges.
  • Climate agreement with China.
  • Protection for Bristol Bay, Alaska from future oil and gas drilling.

In addition to the above, Obama has also presided over record enrollments in the second year of ObamaCare, and the deflating of Russia’s economy. And all the while the U.S. economy is performing better than any other major nation, and most indicators are firmly in positive territory.

Of course, there is still much room for improvement, but that cannot be achieved without the cooperation of Congress. There is not likely to be much of that in the next couple of years, but Obama has proven that he is able to attend to the interests of the American people even when Congress refuses to do so. And the 2016 cycle is shaping up to heavily favor Democrats.

In fact, 2016 holds decidedly bad news for Republicans and their new senate majority. The GOP will be defending 24 seats, as compared to only 10 for the Democrats. Nine of the those GOP seats are in states won by Obama in 2012. So are all of the Democratic seats. With a larger and more representative electorate it is almost a certainty that the senate will flip back to the Democrats.

It will be interesting to see where we go from here as the new congressional session begins next month. What we already know is that with Republicans in charge the Congress has set a new record for laziness. It has spent more time on vacation than working (239 total vacation days in 2014). Plus, it was the least productive session in history. It took that trophy from the session just prior.

Much of the blame has to be laid at the feet of John Boehner, the Tea Party, and the GOP’s inability and genetic aversion to governing. But if anyone is still holding onto the belief that Obama has become an irredeemable lame duck, the evidence of the past six weeks ought to shake that conviction. It is clear that Obama has no intention of being hobbled by an antagonistic Congress that cares more about their own grasp on power than they do the welfare of the people they are supposed to representing.

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A Solution To Sony’s “The Interview” Dilemma That Thwarts The Terrorists

Hackers that stole private information from Sony Pictures and released some of it publicly caused an enormous amount of embarrassment and significant damage to the studio’s relationships with their employees and business partners. But what came next is far more troubling than embarrassment. The hackers behind the data theft have now threatened to attack movie theaters that show the film.

“We will clearly show it to you at the very time and places “The Interview” be shown, including the premiere, how bitter fate those who seek fun in terror should be doomed to.
Soon all the world will see what an awful movie Sony Pictures Entertainment has made.
The world will be full of fear.
Remember the 11th of September 2001.
We recommend you to keep yourself distant from the places at that time.
(If your house is nearby, you’d better leave.)
Whatever comes in the coming days is called by the greed of Sony Pictures Entertainment.
All the world will denounce the SONY.”

The one thing that this message makes clear is that whoever wrote it is a moron. After all, how will the world see what an awful movie it is if, as the terrorists wish, nobody sees it? It is idiocy like this that makes me tend to discount reports that North Korea is behind the hack or the threats. It sounds much more like a disgruntled ex-employee (or a group of them) who is seeking personal revenge. The fractured English looks deliberate as they managed to correctly punctuate the contraction “you would” while elsewhere emulating the syntax of Yoda.

Particularly revealing is the reference to greed as what offends the hacker. If the North Koreans were responsible it would be the perceived insult to their leader, Kim Jong-Un that would have incited them. But even that is a stretch because the film makes fools of the Americans, which is something that the North Koreans would welcome. And why would North Korea suddenly get so upset by this low-brow comedy? Why wouldn’t they have long ago threatened to blow up all of the media outlets that have been harshly critical of their country? Why wouldn’t they have aimed their wrath at hundreds of other more significant criticisms? Ann Coulter and Sean Hannity have said far worse things about North Korean than this film does.

However, now that this has devolved to terrorist threats for whatever reason it is an utterly unacceptable demand. If Sony capitulates to this threat they open the door for future terrorists to effectively control what American filmmakers (and any other product manufacturer) can produce and distribute. And, of course, that also means that the terrorists control what American citizens are permitted to see or buy. That is a power that must not be granted to the cretins who plotted this affair. And Sony has it within their power to thwart them.

Sony Interview

Some theaters have already decided to pull the film from their screens. Sony has told all exhibitors that they will be allowed to do so. Consequently, the film’s profit potential in the theatrical marketplace has been effectively ruined. So why doesn’t Sony just take the next step and announce that they will make the film available for free to everyone. They can release it themselves on the Internet. They can distribute it to cable television operators for free broadcast.

By doing this they keep the means of distribution in their own hands. They can inset advertising to generate revenue. And the ad rates could probably be unusually high due to the abnormally strong level of interest that this film will likely have. As a result, whatever motives the hackers had to suppress the film will have not only been thwarted, it is very likely that more people will see it than if none of this had occurred.

So what do you say, Sony? Do you want to allow terrorists to dictate what Americans can produce and consume? Or do you want to turn a horrible situation around to slap the perpetrators in the face and deter future attempts of this sort of extortion? This solution denies the bad guys a victory at the same time as it rescues the studio from a certain loss.


Jeb Bush Plans To Run For President As Drug Dealing Charges Emerge

The big news today that surprises no one is that Jeb Bush is seriously considering a run at the presidency in 2016. He says that he will launch an exploratory effort to test the waters, but that is a well known artifice that politicians commonly use to disguise or delay their true intentions. Bush has been hinting at running for some time and he is keenly aware that there will not be too many other opportunities. If he passes on 2016, and the next president serves two terms, Bush will be 70 before he could run again.

One of the reasons politicians seek to put off official announcements of candidacy is that they will begin take fire from all sides. Already the conservative wing of the GOP is lashing out against Bush. Another reason they delay announcing is that doing so brings on a whole new level of scrutiny. And Bush’s announcement has produced a perfect example of that risk. A report now circulating in conservative circles is questioning whether Bush was a drug user and dealer while attending prep school at Andover.

Jeb Bush

The allegations stem from an article written by John LeBoutillier, a former Republican congressman and currently a co-host of Fox News Channel’s Political Insiders. Under the title “The Jeb Bush Illegal Drug and Liquor Distributorship at Andover,” LeBoutillier wrote that…

“Jeb Bush and one other fellow student back then ran an illegal drug and liquor distributorship on the Andover campus. When the heat started coming down, Bush ratted out the partner to the school authorities and saved his own skin. Jeb got away with it, was never caught, never punished, graduated unscathed and went on to the University of Texas at Austin.”

If this account is true then Bush was not only engaged in unlawful activities, he was also an untrustworthy associate who will steamroll over others to avoid personal responsibility for his own conduct.

Some will say that these allegations are dredging up a distant past that holds no relevance to the present. After all, Bush went on to complete two terms as governor of Florida without any suspicion of substance consumption or commerce. But we must not forget the manner in which President Obama was harassed by wingnut critics who mined his past back to even his birth.

Conservative conspiracy theorists hatched plots that involved Obama’s parents fabricating a birth certificate to secure his U.S. citizenship. They accused him of being indoctrinated by early childhood influences from Muslim Madrassas to alleged communist subversives like Frank Marshall. They went into his college days at Columbia and Harvard to make tenuous connections between him and his lefty professors. They went totally bonkers over his attendance at the church of Rev. Jeremiah Wright. And, of course, they veritably salivated over reports of his youthful indulgence in marijuana.

If Obama’s drug use was considered an election issue by Republicans in 2008, then certainly Bush should be subjected to the same inquiries today. And as LeBoutillier noted in his article, even if the use of drugs were to be excused, Bush has been accused of trafficking, a far more serious offense. These kinds of tabloid assertions were a staple of the campaigns against Obama. But will the so-called liberal media apply the same standards to Bush?

Don’t count on it. The media is already demonstrating its hypocrisy by making a controversy out of Hillary Clinton’s wealth. They assert that due to her financial status she cannot relate to average Americans even though she was never wealthy until after leaving the White House. But they have yet to question Bush’s riches or their effect on his ability to relate, despite the fact that he was born to great wealth.

Similarly, the media is obsessed with the matter of dynasty. However, the Clinton’s hardly qualify as a dynasty since there is no multi-generational component to their public service. It is simply Bill and Hillary. But Bush is the brother and son of a president, and the grandson of a senator, and the father of an officeholder in Texas. That’s four generations of Bushes in politics. Which is more than the Kennedys. Nevertheless, the media treats the two families the same. Not even Jeb’s mother does that. She was famously quoted saying that “We’ve had enough Bushes,” when asked to comment on a prospective Jeb candidacy.

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Personally, I don’t put much stock in the charges against Bush. Even though the source is more reliable than the fruitcakes that were cooking up plots about Obama, there should be more evidence and corroboration before anyone makes decisions based on them. I am also not a fan of ancient history being exploited as a weapon against people whose current lifestyles do not exhibit any misbehavior. However, I do believe that the press should be, as they say, fair and balanced, and if they go after Democrats like Obama and Clinton, then they need to do the same to Bush and any other Republican candidate. That does not seem to be the case so far.

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Congratulations Fox News: Exaggerations About Ebola Is PolitiFact’s 2014 Lie of the Year

The Pulitzer Prize winning fact checking site PolitiFact has revealed their 2014 Lie of the Year. It is an annual honor that they bestow “based on how broadly a myth or falsehood infiltrates conventional thinking.”

This year the award goes to a news item that was feverishly disseminated by conservative media and especially Fox News: Exaggerations about Ebola. Curiously, just after the midterm election the hysterical pronouncements of a rapidly spreading pandemic that was being deliberately orchestrated by President Obama seemed to fade into the ether from whence it came.

So as a service to the nation, News Corpse will reprise its feature article that studiously reminded readers of what the short-lived Armageddon-Lite had unleashed on the world, and the doom we all narrowly escaped thanks to Fox News curing the disease as soon as the election was over (which we’re sure was just a coincidence).

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Remember when…

…a travel ban on anyone from West Africa was the Republicans’ most important immigration issue in the nation?

GOP Tents America

Remember when…

Bill O’Reilly insisted that the administration was lying to us and demanded that the CDC chief resign if he wouldn’t appear on his show?

Fox News Bill O'Reilly

Remember when…

…Fox’s “psycho” analyst Keith Ablow accused President Obama of wanting Ebola to spread in America because he “sees Americans as having infected others with our deadly economic policies?”

Keith Ablow

Remember when…

…Fox News was consumed by the threat of terrorists streaming across the southern border dripping with Ebola?

Fox News Ebola

Remember when…

…the transmission of Ebola to a second American nurse constituted an “OUTBREAK?”

Fox Nation Ebola Outbreak

Remember when…

…Bill O’Reilly brought in Glenn Beck to accuse Obama of facilitating the spread of Ebola in Dallas because Dallas hates him (even though Dallas voted for Obama in larger majorities than he won nationally)?

Glenn Beck Ebolamania

Remember when…

…A Republican congressmen rushed to Fox News to feverishly accuse Obama of plotting to flood the U.S. with foreign Ebola patients?

Fox News Ebola to America

Stay tuned for more lies and hysteria from Fox News as the 2016 election heats up in the coming weeks and months.

[Addendum] In PolitiFact’s readers’ poll for Lie of the Year (as opposed to their editorial selection) the winner (loser?) was the statement that “Global warming is a hoax.” While PolitiFact attributed this statement to a losing GOP congressional candidate, it has also been proffered by many other Republican pundits and politicians including Jim Inhofe, the incoming chairman of the Senate Environmental and Public Works Committee.


Why Fox News Gets Away With Being Racist: 1% Of Their Audience Is Black

This may not come as a surprise to most people who are paying attention to the media landscape, but another survey by Nielsen reveals that African-Americans are not very well represented in the Fox News audience. The latest numbers from Nielsen, as reported by Mediaite, show that only 1% of Fox News viewers are Black.

Fox News Black Viewer

However, this does explain how Fox can be so brazenly racist in so many of their broadcasts without worrying about the consequences. After all, they have little to lose by offending a segment of the television universe that doesn’t watch their programs anyway. Combine that with Fox’s partisan incentive to suppress Democratic votes and their strategy of inflaming racial animus for political gain doesn’t seem so bad in their warped perspective.

Four years ago News Corpse reported that the Black viewership for Fox was a dismal 1.38%. So, if you can believe it, that meager showing has actually declined since then. The breakdown is an indictment of the rightist network’s bigoted marketing objectives that ignore the diversity of the country and badly trail the racial composition of their competitors. Mediaite writes that…

“During the primetime hours of 8-11 p.m., MSNBC’s audience is 24% black, CNN’s audience is 16% black and Fox News’ audience is just 1% black. By comparison MSNBC’s primetime audience is 67% white while CNN’s is 73% white and Fox News’ is 92% white.”

With numbers like that it is no wonder that Fox can describe Hip-Hop mogul Jay-Z as a “former crack dealer,” dismissing his many years as a successful artist, businessman, and philanthropist. It is why Fox anchor Megyn Kelly is comfortable declaring as a fact that Jesus and Santa Claus are white. It is why virtually every time there is a controversial story that tests the racial tolerance of the nation (Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Voter ID, Immigration, etc.) Fox News takes the side of the white majority. It is why whenever there is an allegation of racism against a person or institution, Fox’s kneejerk response is that racism doesn’t even exist anymore.

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The argument that racism ended after the slaves were freed is one that has been expressed by Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, and many other Fox contributors. Some of the more open-minded Fox commentators assert that racism ended more recently with the election of President Obama, conveniently forgetting that nearly half the country voted against him. But the consensus among them is that anyone who alleges prejudice is a “race hustler” and that there is no such thing as “white privilege.”

So, is the low number of African-American viewers of Fox due to the content of the programming, or is it the brazenly racist programming that has driven away Black viewers? It hardly matters at this point because it is clear that Fox no longer cares and doesn’t believe that they have any obligation to cater to an audience demographic that has almost completely abandoned them.

The problem is that that means they also don’t feel any obligation to the racial diversity and harmony of America. Sadly, we can count on Fox to continue to continue to incite the bigots that flock to their network, and the end result will be to create more division and to encourage distrust and hate. Here’s an example what that kind of agenda will produce.


Fox Nation vs. Reality: Searching For Liberal Soul-Searching Hypocrisy On Drones

Last week the Senate Intelligence Committee released its report on the CIA torture program that was used to extract information from alleged terrorists. The report revealed a disturbing pattern of unlawful activities that failed to produce much, if any, useful intelligence.

The resulting controversy ignited a much-needed debate on the questions of law and humanity. Most conservatives and Republicans were outraged that the report was made public. In fact, they were more upset with the publishing of information derived from taxpayer-funded investigations than they were with the revelations that our national security apparatus was flagrantly violating the standards of decency as well as international and domestic law. And lacking any reasonable argument to defend the actual practice of torture, they attempted to divert the discussion to the public exposure of it.

Another diversionary tactic taken up by the right was to seek an equivalency between the torture program that was mainly advanced by the Bush administration and other programs with similarly questionable methods that could be attributed to President Obama. To that end, Fox Nation posted an article sourced to the Washington Examiner that asked “Liberal Hypocrisy: Why No Soul-Searching On Drones?”

Fox Nation Drones

That would be an excellent question except for the fact that its premise is so far removed from reality you have to wonder where these quibblers have been for the past six years. The article complained that…

“President Obama and his allies are quick to denounce harsh interrogation techniques as torture, framing the renewed scrutiny of Central Intelligence Agency methods as crucial to restoring U.S. moral authority on the global stage.

“They are less eager, however, to apply the same standard to the administration’s reliance on remote-controlled, targeted killings, a drone campaign that critics say invites natural comparisons to extreme interrogations employed during George W. Bush’s presidency.”

How they surmised a lack of eagerness on the part of liberals to renounce drones is a complete mystery. Liberals were the first, and most vociferous, critics of Obama’s drone policy. There is ample evidence that goes back to the very first days and weeks of his presidency. These early critics came from the most staunchly progressive media outlets and were expressing their consistent opposition to practices that demonstrated a lack of respect for human life and suffering. For example:

These are typical of the harsh judgments aimed at the drone programs implemented by the Obama administration by liberal persons and institutions. It has never been ambiguous where progressives stand on this issue. And while there have been some critics of drones on the right, for the most part the same wingnuts who favor torture have been supportive of drones.

In addition to those listed above, filmmaker Robert Greenwald of Brave New Films directed and released a full length documentary blasting drones titled Unmanned: America’s Drone Wars. And some the favorite targets of conservative wrath – comedians – were also among the most biting critics. Stephen Colbert took on the drone issue, as did his colleague Jon Stewart in “Romancing the Drone.” Perhaps the most searing (and hilarious) beating the drone issue has taken was delivered by John Oliver in an extended and entertaining harangue. Sit back and enjoy the show. And don’t let the phony protestations of Fox News fool you into thinking that liberals never took aim at any drones.

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Video Mashup On Fox News Falsely Places Al Sharpton At Scene Of Anti-Cop Protest

The hosts of Fox & Friends went out of their way Sunday to malign civil rights leader and MSNBC host Al Sharpton. In multiple segments throughout their morning broadcast they aired videos of Sharpton at a rally in Washington, D.C. to protest the deaths of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and Eric Garner in Staten Island, New York, and other victims of police brutality.

However, in a deliberate act of journalistic deceit, they spliced those videos together with a separate event in New York City where some protesters were heard disparaging the police and chanting for “dead cops.” [Video below]

The implication by Fox was that Sharpton was leading those marchers. But the anti-cop marchers were not a part of any official program connected to the New York protest and certainly not connected to the rally in Washington where Sharpton spoke. They were described by the New York Daily News as a “breakaway group” from a much larger, and largely peaceful demonstration in Manhattan.

By editing together these unrelated videos, Fox leaves the impression that Sharpton himself was calling for the death of police officers. The Fox hosts made things worse by adding their own commentary to the same effect. Here is a sampling of the dialog from the program:

Tucker Carlson (laughing): Huh. So the first clip you heard people are saying, “We want the cops dead.” And the second you heard Al Sharpton say “We’re not against the police.”
Clayton Morris: And a lot of protesters were holding signs that said “Real thugs wear flag pins.” And Sharpton saying “We’re not anti-police?”

Co-host Anna Kooiman did note that there were 25,000 people there who feel very strongly about the cause and that “largely it was peaceful.” She added that she didn’t hear any of the anti-police chanting but acknowledged that “there are always bad apples” in large crowds. At that, Carlson expanded on his diatribe.

Carlson: What they were doing as a group is making this into a racial issue, and that’s what I object to. I don’t have any problem with a conversation about police brutality. I don’t want the police looking like Delta Force. I think that’s a real conversation I’m happy to engage in. I may agree with them. What I don’t think this is about is race. I don’t think these are examples of racism, and I think it’s totally unhelpful to make this a conversation about white vs. black. And it’s ridiculous to have it led by Al Sharpton who has zero credibility at all. He’s a hustler and, I think, a criminal.

Let’s just set aside the fact that Carlson’s characterization of Sharpton is itself racist in tone and he failed to support his reckless accusation of criminality by Sharpton. Carlson’s alleged interest in a conversation about police brutality is completely disingenuous. Prior to this becoming a national news story he never sought to initiate such a conversation. And while he may want to dismiss the racial component of the crisis, the facts show that African-American men are 21 times more likely to be shot dead by the police than white men. Ignoring these statistics makes it impossible to have an honest debate on the subject.

Next the Curvy Couch Potatoes set about to shift the discussion to another topic that better fits their prejudiced viewpoints. Like many other conservative pundits, they drift off to question why civil rights activists never address the breakdown of the family or the incidence of crime in their communities. Of course, that’s a false charge because those topics are a constant part of the dialog, but the elitist TV personalities at Fox are simply too far removed from the real world to have noticed it.

Carlson: It’s so much easier just to claim that white racism is America’s biggest problem. […] You don’t have to do anything about massive unemployment in the black community, about crime in the black community, about the destruction of the black family. Those are the real issues, but you get to ignore them when you blame it all on racism. And so it serves the purposes of a couple of people – President Obama, Al Sharpton – but it kinda shafts everyone else.

Carlson’s analysis is exactly backwards. In truth, by focusing only on unemployment or crime you get to ignore racism, which is the cause of many of the other problems faced by the black community he pretends to be so concerned about. And he makes certain not to miss the opportunity to portray the President as exploiting the race issue, because what else would a black president do?

The arrogance and condescension of these privileged TV divas is emblematic of the Fox News approach to race. They are certain that they know better than the people who are directly affected by society’s bigotry and if only those black folks would listen to them everything would get straightened out in a matter of days. And race wouldn’t have anything to do with it. But that view is unrealistic and based on their own sheltered experiences. They are demonstrating an ethic that was profoundly articulated on a sign that somehow got included in the video that Fox aired for this very segment:

Fox News Sign Blame Poor

That could not be a more perfect image to represent Fox News: “Rich people paying rich people to tell middle class people to blame poor people.” And that message is ironically sitting right above Fox’s text that blatantly lies that “Al Sharpton leads protest against police.” To be clear, the protest was NOT against police. It was against unlawful use of excessive force. It is a distinctly pro-police position to advocate on behalf of the majority of officers who are lawful, decent, protectors of all citizens. Good cops don’t want bad cops sullying their reputation.

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