Fox News Fires Woman For Negligent Honesty

TVNewser is reporting that a Fox News employee was fired for telling John McCain that she voted for him and that he was going to win. Jennifer Locke was a production assistant on assignment for Fox News to cover the Time 100 Gala when she confessed her admiration for McCain. McCain reportedly replied:

“You’re not supposed to reveal that.”

Quite right, Senator. She was not supposed to reveal that. It’s a good thing you were there to scold her for letting the cat out of the bag. Your Fox handlers will reward you for that with more fawning coverage. Everyone knows that it’s perfectly alright for Locke to think that way, so long as she keeps it to herself. All Fox personnel should be aware that any disclosure of political bias is a violation of company policy and is punishable by termination. Particularly if you are an anonymous PA with no real clout. Of course, if you are a chief political consultant (Carl Cameron) or a Washington managing editor (Brit Hume) you are exempt.

Locke’s views would seem to have little relevance while working the entertainment beat, but she still needed to made into an example. It’s not as if her employers were unaware of her views. In 2004 she was the subject of an Associated Press article (published in the Washington Post) wherein she related her experiences as a lonely Republican at the American University of Paris:

“Locke surfaced in an informal sampling of AUP students at a broadcast journalism course. When an AP reporter asked students who favored Bush, her hand shot up.

Most students accused Bush of spurring terrorism and alienating America’s old allies, but Locke, an international affairs major whose ambition is to be an anchor on Fox News, stuck to her guns.”

What a sadly poignant tale. This young woman, who dreamed of stardom at Fox News, was on her way to realizing her dreams, but was summarily dismissed for articulating the sort of opinion that likely got her hired in the first place.

If only she had followed the lead of wise elders like Karl Rove, who appears regularly on Fox News without ever disclosing his role as an adviser to the McCain campaign. Or she could have looked to role models like the Pentagon Pundits (SPINCOM), who appeared on TV news programs (mostly Fox) clandestinely spewing pro-war disinformation.

The trick is to keep your prejudices safely behind a curtain of obfuscation. You can season your reporting with all the partisanship you want as long as you never admit that you’re doing it. You can enter into relationships that are clearly journalistic conflicts of interest as long you deny such relationships exist. Had Locke known better than to publicly reveal her biases she would still be able to pursue her career at Fox and advance to positions where she could happily slant her reporting. As it is, she will just have to chalk it up to experience and take her learned lessons with her to the next propaganda outfit down the road.

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12 thoughts on “Fox News Fires Woman For Negligent Honesty

  1. As if you couldn’t hear 100 MSNBC staffers saying the same thing when Obama walks by.

    • Setting aside the fact that this is all in your imagination since you can’t cite a single incidence of it occurring, it sounds like you’re saying that it is OK since everyone’s doing it.

  2. The bizarre kabuki theater where all the Foxies wear “fair and balanced” on their sleeves while continually spinning to the right demands everyone keep in step. Even lead dancer Bill O’Reilly is forced to lie twice a night about the “no spin zone.”

    So some low-level production assistant dancing out of step ruins the show.

    Like a little kid still clinging to the illusion Santa Claus is real, conservative Fox News viewers believe the act is not a clumsy stage routine but them gazing upon a comfortable, convenient conservative reality.

    J$’s fan-boy web site is a case in point. Slathering on plenty of kumadori (kabuki make-up) onto his face to get in full character, even threat of water boarding at GITMO won’t get J$ to divulge his political leanings while he openly liberal-bashes with relish (e.g., he’s a principle blogger at Olbermann Watch) and rushes to the defense of all the usual right-wing suspects refusing to yield an inch. Just as “fair and balanced” as the Fox News he’s addicted to.

    Actually, my Santa Claus analogy trivializes this act because only a religious zeal describes why fully grown adults would take such a game so seriously. Hardcore Fox News fans must be absolutely terrified their closely held conservative belief system will come all crashing down if they discover Fox’s half of the truth isn’t the gospel honest version.

    • Actually, I think J$ is out of the conservative closet. But I agree with the rest of your comment – and nicely said.

      Take a look at my essay on the mindset of Fox viewers:
      The Cult Of Foxonalityâ„¢

  3. “Actually, I think J$ is out of the conservative closet.”

    Must have just happened. Recently, he pretty much threw me out of Johnny Dollar’s Place for pressing him on the issue.

    I’ll pray for the lad he successfully completes the rest of the 12-step program. ;)

  4. Should be interesting to see where she resurfaces and who will hire her with that glaring “Fox News” on her resume and history of rabid Bush devotion.

  5. You should re-visit your sources on this. Ms. Locke, I hear, has been re-hired by Fox…quietly…to a higher paying job on the web.

    • Not that it would surprise me, but what are your sources? Can you point me to anything to verify this?

    • Ms. Locke is a friend of mine. Just ran into her in the city. No, she does not work for Fox.

      • Thanks.

        If Ms. Locke has any comments on this episode now that there is some distance from it, please let her know that I would be happy to publish it.

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