Just As I Predicted, Fox News Hated Obama’s Speech (Surprise)

Just as I predicted this morning, Fox News, and their Republican comrades, marched in lock-step opposition to President’s Obama speech on dealing with the threat of ISIL.

Republicans

Immediately following the speech, Fox News spent the next couple of hours picking it apart with sometimes ludicrous logic. They began with commentary from their White House correspondent Ed Henry who asserted his opinion that Obama, by calling for decisive action to destroy ISIL, had reversed himself on his prior foreign policy which, of course, was to destroy ISIL.

Megyn Kelly, who anchored the post-speech discussion, led with a series of poll results that cast the President in a negative light. She then approached her guests with blatantly leading questions, such as her wondering whether Obama’s heart was in his stated intention to take out ISIL. She also asked whether Obama’s policy to leave Iraq in 2011 caused the situation now where we have to go back “in a way that is even more dangerous.” That question ignores certain facts, such as the date for the departure of U.S. troops which was set by George W. Bush. Also, it can hardly be characterized as “more dangerous” when Obama’s plan will result in about 1,500 American soldiers in Iraq, as opposed to the 140,000 that were there previously. As for what caused the situation that allowed ISIL to emerge, that was solely due to Bush’s plundering of the government of Saddam Hussein (based on lies) and banishing his generals and other military personal, who went on to form ISIL.

Dana Perino, Bush’s former press secretary, said that she liked Obama’s line “If you threaten the United States you will have no safe haven.” But she said that the reason she liked it was because she had heard the same thing before from her old boss when he said “You are either with us or you are against us.” How is that even remotely the same?

However, the most idiotic commentary came from Brit Hume who said…

“If the threat is sufficiently great to American interests and to America itself, then it seems that one would do whatever it takes to eliminate the threat. [Obama] didn’t quite go that far. He said he was determined to destroy ISIS, but you heard at the end when he was talking about what we do in these situations. He said “We do what it takes.” He didn’t say we do whatever it takes.

Are you FRIGGIN’ kidding me? I would love to know what Hume thinks is different about those two statements. Obviously, these cretins are so consumed with finding fault that their cranial synapses are misfiring.

Every guest during the remainder of Kelly’s program was an Obama opponent, including Hume, Perino, General Jack Keane, Chris Stirewalt, and Sen. Ted Cruz. Cruz launched his tirade by saying that Obama’s speech was “fundamentally unserious,” and was representative of the “failed Obama/Clinton foreign policy.” That was his way of injecting politics into the discussion by invoking the name of the women he hopes to challenge in 2016. Kelly’s show was followed by Sean Hannity who added John McCain and Rand Paul to the bitchfest.

Not a single Democrat or pundit supportive of the President or his policy was allowed on the air during the post-speech analysis. So much for the “fair and balanced” network. This is why the prediction I made earlier was so easy. The same prediction can be made for pretty much any event that involves Obama or any progressive politician or policy. Fox News single-mindedly follows the philosophy of Marx (Groucho, that is):

Whatever it is, I’m against it.

IDIOCRACY: Fox News Is Aghast That Media Watchdog Does What Media Watchdogs Do

On CNN’s Reliable Sources this weekend, host Brian Stelter interviewed David Brock, the founder of Media Matters, to respond to an accusation made by disgraced former CBS reporter Sharyl Attkisson on last week’s program. Attkisson alleged that Media Matters might have been paid to target her for criticism. It was an irresponsible and paranoid allegation for which she offered no evidence or any details on who would have offered the payment or to whom. In effect, Attkisson demonstrated why her reporting is regarded as hackery.

In the segment on Reliable Sources (video below), Brock was asked about the nature of his business and his relationship with other media enterprises. He candidly replied that “We do work with reporters. We’re a media watchdog group.” That seems pretty obvious. It is precisely what media watchdogs are designed to do. They monitor various journalism outlets, analyze their content, and communicate their findings to the public and other members of the press. It’s a valuable service that helps to keep the media honest and accurate. But that’s not the way Fox News sees it.

Fox Nation

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In a desperate attempt to further smear an organization with which Fox is obsessed, Fox News posted an article on their Fox Nation website with the shocking disclosure that Brock “Admits to Working with Media Outlets on Stories.” That’s more of a definition than an admission. It’s perfectly acceptable for Brock to provide his reports to the media, just as it’s acceptable for the media to receive and evaluate them.

Nevertheless, the Fox Nationalists portrayed this activity as if it were criminal, saying that he “did not deny the allegations today.” Again, that’s more of a job description than an allegation. And it’s a job that is done by many organizations including some with conservative views. One of the most notable is the Media Research Center and its NewsBusters website. Run by ultra-rightist Brent Bozell, the MRC is a major source of information for the conservative media circus including Fox News. Former Fox anchor Brit Hume even lauded the MRC saying…

“I want to say a word, however, of thanks to Brent and the team at the Media Research Center […] for the tremendous amount of material that the Media Research Center provided me for so many years when I was anchoring Special Report, I don’t know what we would’ve done without them. It was a daily buffet of material to work from, and we certainly made tremendous use of it.”

Given the close relationship between the MRC and Fox News, it is blatantly hypocritical for them to assert some sort of malfeasance on the part of Media Matters. When Fox’s primary anchor and managing editor confesses to making “tremendous use” of the MRC’s data, and not knowing what he would have done without them, it seems somewhat overblown and self-serving to criticize Media Matters for simply documenting the flagrant bias and inept inaccuracies of the conservative media.

It would not be too much of a stretch to observe the jealousy of the right who have a much harder time fabricating their fake outrages and phony controversies like the one presented here. Whereas Media Matters, sadly, has an abundance of right-wing distortions and lies to catalog. Brock may have said it best on Reliable Sources when he noted that conservative watchdogs…

“…seem to be particularly incensed about Media Matters’ relationship with the media. Maybe we’re just doing a better job than they are.”

FLASHBACK: Before Fox News Attacked The IRS, They Embraced It To Attack Media Matters

In researching the recent controversies over the IRS and its alleged targeting of conservative non-profits, I stumbled across an article I wrote two years ago that unveils yet another blatant hypocrisy from Fox News (as if more were necessary to make the point). The current programming on Fox is dedicated almost non-stop to hammering the Obama administration for the misbehavior of low-level IRS staff. The story has even supplanted their previous pet scandal, Benghazi. And despite making broad accusations of complicity by the President, they have failed to provide even a smidgen of evidence that he had any role in the way that non-profits were selected for review.

That simple fact, however, has not stopped Fox from launching a sustained campaign of outrage aimed at the IRS, which they now regard as a totalitarian agency bent on destroying America and freedom. But it was not always thus. Not too long ago, Fox News was happy to use the IRS as a cudgel against their own perceived enemies. They embarked on mission to wipe the watchdog group Media Matters off the face of the earth. It was a weeks-long effort that included dozens of broadcast segments explicitly recruiting their viewers to file falsified complaints challenging the tax-exempt status of Media Matters. In the process they brought in pundits, and lawyers, and even their in-house “Psycho Analyst” to paint a disparaging portrait of the organization and its founder.

Fox News - Media Matters

The irony of Fox using the IRS to harass a non-profit organization just because they disagree agree with it will surely be lost on everyone at Fox and everyone who watches it. Below is the article re-posted in full because it is still as relevant today as it was then. Actually more so, with the addition of Fox’s newly minted contempt for the IRS.


Media Matters Has Fox News Scared And Desperate

[July 11, 2011] In the untamed jungle that is cable news, there is a ferocious and predatory beast stalking the terrain. Anyone who has encountered Fox News in the wild can attest to the spine-chilling threat imposed by the pseudo-news network. And now Fox News has the scent of new game.

The Fox News pack is on the prowl for the media watchdog group, Media Matters, against whom they have recently initiated a sustained assault. In the past two weeks they have featured over 30 stories with the express purpose of challenging the group’s right to exist. Fox has assigned network stalwarts like Bill O’Reilly, Bret Baier, Charles Krauthammer, James Rosen, Ann Coulter, Dick Morris, and Bernie Goldberg, to the mission. This is an unprecedented, broadly distributed attack by a major media enterprise against a non-profit group they regard as an adversary.

This latest batch of complaints stem from comments made last March by Media Matters founder, David Brock. He was quoted in Politico as saying that the organization was shifting its focus toward Fox News to one of “guerrilla warfare and sabotage.” Giving Fox the benefit of doubt, one might conclude that it’s only fair that Fox defend itself from such an overt declaration of war. The only thing that might refute that perspective is – reality.

If this is war, it is one wherein Fox is the aggressor. Fox News initiated their attacks long ago with aggressive and false assertions that cast Media Matters as hacks, anti-American, violent, and communist. They alleged that George Soros was pulling their strings long before Soros ever made any contributions the group. Fox stalwarts like Bill O’Reilly and Glenn Beck engaged in rhetoric so hostile that it inspired actual physical attacks against Media Matters and their progressive allies. This video (courtesy of Media Matters) was posted two years ago and illustrates the hostility harbored across the Fox platform long before Brock’s recent comments:

The new and highly coordinated offensive by Fox asserts that Media Matters has violated the terms of their tax-exempt status by setting their sights on Fox. They quote from the IRS rules governing non-profits that state that…

“…501(c)(3) organizations are absolutely prohibited from directly or indirectly participating in, or intervening in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office.”

On the basis of that criteria, Fox News argues that Media Matters is in violation and should have their tax-exempt status revoked. However, in order for that to be valid, Fox would have to admit that they are a political operation so that attacks on Fox News would qualify as opposition to political campaigns and/or candidates. Without that stipulation there is no violation on the part of Media Matters. So Fox is, in effect, conceding their role as a Republican mouthpiece. Shocking, I know.

Contine reading

Fox News Covers the Obama Inauguration: ‘Saddest Day Of The Year’

Seconds after the first inauguration of President Obama, Chris Wallace of Fox News speculated that he wasn’t really president because the oath was flubbed by Chief Justice John Roberts. That suggestion that Obama was not a legitimate president foreshadowed what would become a cacophony of Birthers and Republicans determined to reject any and all of what Obama put forth.

On this morning’s broadcast of Obama’s second inauguration, Fox News continued their dismissive coverage of the President. They led it off with the kiddies at Fox & Friends who exhibited their respect for this historic day by reporting what an awful day it is.

Steve Doocey: “As if a cold Monday in January wasn’t dreary enough, today has been dubbed ‘Blue Monday’, the most depressing day of the year.”

I’m quite sure that the day of Obama’s inauguration is decidedly depressing for the these remedial, right-wing buzzkills. But Fox was not through casting aspersions on this day and the President. Immediately following the inaugural address, Fox’s panel of sourpuss pundits picked apart the speech, which they universally agreed was a partisan screed aimed at bashing the GOP.

Chris Wallace: “This was an unyielding, uncompromising espousal of a liberal agenda.”
Brit Hume: “This is utterly bereft of an outreach to the opposition.”

Never mind that the President repeatedly spoke of how the nation’s greatest accomplishments were achieved by working together and how that was a necessity for moving forward today in light of the difficulties that lie ahead. Fox is positioning itself for another four years of blind opposition to anything that might help this president – or this country while this president is in the White House.

Fox Nation

Their community web site, Fox Nation, went to even further extremes to disparage the President with at least five derogatory articles by virulent Obama adversaries, including their headline piece featuring Mark Levin who was quoted from a Breitbart interview where he ripped the President in the most repulsive terms.

Levin: “I think there’s a lot of perverse thinking that goes on in Obama’s mind, radical left-wing thinking. He was indoctrinated with Marx and Alinksy propaganda.”

And this is how Fox News covers Obama on the day of his inauguration, a day usually set aside to celebrate America’s democratic principles and offer best wishes for the new administration’s efforts to meet the challenges facing the nation. We can hardly wait to see what Fox is dreaming up for tomorrow, or the next day, or the next four years. And Fox wonders why they are shunned by the White House.

Succumbing To Desperation: Fox News’ Loony Last Days Of The Election

As hard as it seems to believe after an interminably long and divisive campaign, election day is upon us in just four short days. And with momentum shifting toward President Obama, Fox News is pulling out all the stops to find something – anything – to smear the President and grease the skids for Oily Mitt Romney. But this is getting ridiculous…

Fox Nation Smears

These articles are bordering on Dadaist absurdity in their wild flailing about for subjects of attack. If anything, this only makes Fox look more desperate and childish than they usually do.

For Fox to note that there are New Yorkers who are still struggling with the devastation of Superstorm Sandy is not exactly news. Every projection of the impact of the storm prior to its arrival made it clear that there was going to be severe damage and that recovery would take weeks, if not months. But to ask “Where’s Obama,” as if he should be delivering cans of soup from the back of a van is ludicrous. The truth is that Obama’s federal response is managing a variety of agencies working on restoration of power, cleanup, rebuilding, and rescue and medical attention. On top of that, CNN reported that…

“The federal government shipped one million meals Thursday to New York, where National Guard troops were distributing them to people in need, [New York Governor Andrew] Cuomo told reporters.”

Obama has cut red tape to declare disaster status and accelerate aid. And he has been universally praised by the local authorities, including political adversaries like New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. Where’s Obama? Right where he should be – in charge and showing leadership.

The other daft article by Fox was a reporting of a column from the Daily Caller, a right-wing rag run by Fox News contributor Tucker Carlson. The headline snidely asks if Obama had a grade-point average of 2.6 while at Columbia University. But as if to refute their own brash slander, the second paragraph of the story says…

“The 2.6 grade can’t be confirmed, is contradicted by some evidence, and it doesn’t say anything about the courses, professors and associations Obama was immersed in during his two-year stay in Columbia.”

They why fu heck print it? This is the lengths that the right will go to tarnish the President on the eve of the election. It has nothing to with his record, his leadership, or his vision for the future. It reaches back twenty years to speculate about something that they admit they have no evidence of. However, if they are determined to bring up Obama’s academic history they could just mention that he graduated from Harvard Law Magna Cum Laud. That’s verifiable and a clear indication of his scholastic excellence. It’s interesting that Fox continues to be obsessed with Obama’s decades old school files but isn’t the least bit interested in Mitt Romney’s tax returns, which are far more relevant to the question of fitness to serve as president.

Fox News NewsBustersThis sort of reporting brings Fox down to the level of the broadly ridiculed “challenge” by Donald Trump to ransom Obama’s academic records in exchange for five million dollars. The tone of Fox’s reporting just keeps getting sillier. That may be because they have handed off their editorial duties to the uber-conservative Media Research Center and their comically inept NewsBusters. Recently Fox stacked their op-ed page with content exclusively acquired from MRC/NewsBusters. Fox seems to have outsourced their opinion pages to one of the most partisan GOP flacks in the nation. The four articles featured were by Noel Sheppard, Tim Graham, Clay Waters, and Dan Gainor, all MRC/NewsBusters hacks.

This actually isn’t too surprising considering that Fox’s former chief anchor, Brit Hume, effusively credited MRC when he retired from the anchor desk saying…

“I want to say a word, however, of thanks to Brent and the team at the Media Research Center […] for the tremendous amount of material that the Media Research Center provided me for so many years when I was anchoring Special Report, I don’t know what we would’ve done without them. It was a daily buffet of material to work from, and we certainly made tremendous use of it.”

Just four more days. Thank God. How much more preposterous do you think Fox can get in that brief window of opportunity? Will we see articles blaming Obama for extreme weather catastrophes? Will they charge him with murdering American ambassadors? Will they find his Kenyan passport in a shoebox along with love letters from Hugo Chavez? Don’t rule it out. Desperation causes strange and deranged behavior. And Fox is already exhibiting symptoms of Obama Dementia Disease (ODD).

Right-Wing Noise Machine Still Terrified Of Media Matters

Further affirming the desperation of the mavens of the conservative media, a new campaign of slander and innuendo has been launched to tarnish the reputation of Media Matters for America (MMfA), and its founder David Brock. This is reminiscent of a similar campaign orchestrated last year.

This latest barrage of defamation was initiated by Tucker Carlson’s Internet rag, The Daily Caller (TDC). Carlson is a Fox News contributor so it isn’t surprising that Fox immediately jumped aboard this effort with featured segments hosted by Steve Doocy and Megyn Kelly. They also posted the story on their Fox Nation web site, twice. [Update: Carlson later appeared on Bill O’Reilly’s program as well]

The gist of the story, as described by TDC, is that MMfA is manipulating news organizations, coordinating messaging with the White House, and struggling to cope with the “volatile and erratic behavior” of Brock, whom TDC alleges is mentally ill. TDC never reveals from where they got their psychiatric credentials, nor when they had an opportunity to examine and diagnose Brock. Likewise, they never reveal where they got any of the information for the other allegations they make against MMfA.

MMfA was created to document conservative media bias and work to implement reforms that would produce more balanced reporting. Yet, TDC is confused by the fact that MMfA’s research is cited by progressive organizations and media analysts. Why that would confuse them is, in itself, confusing. MMfA makes its materials available for that very purpose. They are providing a service that other interested organizations are free to employ or ignore. They are not manipulating anybody, nor are they forcing anyone to coordinate with them. Additionally, TDC thinks it’s unusual that people and enterprises who share an ideological viewpoint might produce commentaries that have certain similarities. Of course they do. It would be unusual if they didn’t. Does TDC think it’s unusual when John Boehner and Rush Limbaugh say similar things?

TDC’s multipart series on MMfA kicks off with a personal attack on Brock:

“David Brock was smoking a cigarette on the roof of his Washington, D.C. office one day in the late fall of 2010 when his assistant and two bodyguards suddenly appeared and whisked him and his colleague Eric Burns down the stairs. […] The threat he faced while smoking on his roof? ‘Snipers.'”

TDC then asserts that Brock is suffering from severe paranoia and believes that there are right-wing assassins out to get him. But how can Brock be characterized as paranoid when, while he was having a leisurely break, his security team took action to protect him. Perhaps the bodyguards are paranoid, but nothing in this story suggests that Brock is.

For contrast, it should be pointed out that there is no mention by TDC of the reported paranoia of Fox News CEO Roger Ailes. No mention that he was cited as the reason that the NYPD provided police protection for the Fox headquarters at a cost of $500,000 a year to the people of New York. No mention of the obsessive fears described by Tim Dickinson in a Rolling Stone profile:

“Ailes is also deeply paranoid. Convinced that he has personally been targeted by Al Qaeda for assassination, he surrounds himself with an aggressive security detail and is licensed to carry a concealed handgun. […] Murdoch installed Ailes in the corner office on Fox’s second floor at 1211 Avenue of the Americas in Manhattan. The location made Ailes queasy: It was close to the street, and he lived in fear that gay activists would try to attack him in retaliation over his hostility to gay rights. (In 1989, Ailes had broken up a protest of a Rudy Giuliani speech by gay activists, grabbing demonstrator by the throat and shoving him out the door.) Barricading himself behind a massive mahogany desk, Ailes insisted on having ‘bombproof glass’ installed in the windows – even going so far as to personally inspect samples of high-tech plexiglass, as though he were picking out new carpet.”

The TDC article went to great lengths to expose something that ought to have been obvious – that liberal news outlets like DailyKos and Salon would utilize information compiled by MMfA. [Full disclosure: News Corpse has used MMfA materials frequently. It isn’t coordinated. It’s just reliable, documented content] The grunt work of aggregating video and other reporting is appreciated by those who use MMfA materials. Much of it is provided without any editorializing. The right has always been fearful of any entity that would simply record their disinformation, nonsense, and hostility, and then hold them accountable for it. But in condemning MMfA for providing such content to liberal media, they demonstrate their rank hypocrisy. They have yet to criticize NewsBusters or their parent organization, the Media Research Center. However, the former managing editor of Fox News was abundantly grateful:

Brit Hume: I want to say a word, however, of thanks to Brent [Bozell] and the team at the Media Research Center […] for the tremendous amount of material that the Media Research Center provided me for so many years when I was anchoring Special Report, I don’t know what we would’ve done without them. It was a daily buffet of material to work from, and we certainly made tremendous use of it.

Much of the remaining TDC article is a montage of incongruous allegations and lame assumptions. For instance, they cite a meeting between Brock and Obama aide Valerie Jarret as signaling some sort of conspiracy. It was a one-time meeting that occurred over a year and a half ago. They complain that reporters would “get a thousand hostile emails” after exposure on MMfA. But isn’t that sort of accountability the point of an enterprise whose purpose is to unmask media bias?

TDC posted a link to a video of Brock that they labeled an “odd media appearance,” but which seemed pretty restrained and composed to me. They described his aspiration to develop a political action committee to challenge Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS as “unsettlingly grandiose.” Is that just their standard put-down for anyone who would dare to take on the mighty Rove? And perhaps the most disturbing revelation of all was that “there were very harsh penalties for getting things wrong. And justifiably so.” Imagine that…Brock actually insisted that his staff pay attention to detail and accuracy. What a beast! After all, they are just an organization that monitors the detail and accuracy of other organizations. Who cares if they get some things wrong? They should adopt the attitude of Fox News anchorette Gretchen Carlson:

“When we make a mistake reading the news headlines, whereas at a [broadcast] network you’d probably get fired, instead, we’re like, ‘Eh, we screwed up.’

TDC says that there will be additional installments of this series throughout the week. I should hope so, because there was nothing in this installment that could be considered newsworthy. However, I expect that the upcoming chapters will be equally devoid of any useful information. So far the only thing that TDC has achieved with this expose is wasting their bandwidth with unsourced, anonymous gossip and personal insults. If it gets any play at all it will be due to the help they got from Carlson’s bosses at Fox News. And the only thing that any of it proves is how dreadfully afraid the conservative propagandists are of Media Matters. It is astonishing how the innocent act of recording their words can set the rightist empire to trembling.

[Update] The Fox Nationalists just posted their third fourth item about Media Matters (although all of them link to the same TDC article). Apparently the other two did not have sufficiently sensationalist headlines to stir the scandal-lust of their perverted readers, so this time they packed in unsubstantiated allegations that Brock is “believed to be” using illegal drugs.

Fox Nation

My anonymous sources have confirmed to me that Rupert Murdoch is believed to be funding the New American Nazi Party and patronizing Mistress Helga in swastika-print diapers.

Media Matters Has Fox News Scared And Desperate

This is a compilation of several previous News Corpse articles that I put together for Alternet.com.

In the untamed jungle that is cable news, there is a ferocious and predatory beast stalking the terrain. Anyone who has encountered Fox News in the wild can attest to the spine-chilling threat imposed by the pseudo-news network. And now Fox News has the scent of new game.

The Fox News pack is on the prowl for the media watchdog group, Media Matters, against whom they have recently initiated a sustained assault. In the past two weeks they have featured over 30 stories with the express purpose of challenging the group’s right to exist. Fox has assigned network stalwarts like Bill O’Reilly, Bret Baier, Charles Krauthammer, James Rosen, Ann Coulter, Dick Morris, and Bernie Goldberg, to the mission. This is an unprecedented, broadly distributed attack by a major media enterprise against a non-profit group they regard as an adversary.

This latest batch of complaints stem from comments made last March by Media Matters founder, David Brock. He was quoted in Politico as saying that the organization was shifting its focus toward Fox News to one of “guerrilla warfare and sabotage.” Giving Fox the benefit of doubt, one might conclude that it’s only fair that Fox defend itself from such an overt declaration of war. The only thing that might refute that perspective is – reality.

If this is war, it is one wherein Fox is the aggressor. Fox News initiated their attacks long ago with aggressive and false assertions that cast Media Matters as hacks, anti-American, violent, and communist. They alleged that George Soros was pulling their strings long before Soros ever made any contributions the group. Fox stalwarts like Bill O’Reilly and Glenn Beck engaged in rhetoric so hostile that it inspired actual physical attacks against Media Matters and their progressive allies. This video (courtesy of Media Matters) was posted two years ago and illustrates the hostility harbored across the Fox platform long before Brock’s recent comments:

The new and highly coordinated offensive by Fox asserts that Media Matters has violated the terms of their tax-exempt status by setting their sights on Fox. They quote from the IRS rules governing non-profits that state that…

“…501(c)(3) organizations are absolutely prohibited from directly or indirectly participating in, or intervening in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office.”

On the basis of that criteria, Fox News argues that Media Matters is in violation and should have their tax-exempt status revoked. However, in order for that to be valid, Fox would have to admit that they are a political operation so that attacks on Fox News would qualify as opposition to political campaigns and/or candidates. Without that stipulation there is no violation on the part of Media Matters. So Fox is, in effect, conceding their role as a Republican mouthpiece. Shocking, I know.

Contine reading

Shameless Right-Wing Hypocrisy On Media Funding

There has lately been an excess of rage expressed over a couple of charitable donations by George Soros. Both NPR and Media Matters were beneficiaries of Soros’ generosity. These are both media-related entities that play no direct role in politics.

But the same rightist critics of donations don’t seem to have any problem with Rupert Murdoch giving millions of dollars to overtly political enterprises: the Republican Governor’s Association and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. That money is used to buy ads against Democrats on Fox News, so the money Murdoch donated ends up right back in his pocket. And another big difference in these donations is that Soros was open and honest about announcing his largesse, while Murdoch gave in secret and even remarked that he had anticipated that his donations would remain secret.

A fair observer would have to wonder why the munificence of Soros is problematic but the fact that Right-wingers are just as generous to their ideological allies isn’t worthy of discussion. They will never mention, for instance, that uber-rightist Richard Mellon Scaife has given millions to the conservative Media Research Center (which runs several right-wing operations like NewsBusters). And while Soros remains outside of the organizations to which he contributes, Murdoch has moved inside as a board member of the Associated Press.

The hypocrisy demonstrated by the right is world-class. While the left is taking heat for being totally transparent, the right takes pride in enforcing silence about its clandestine activities. Since they have admitted that they aspire to fund their friends in secret, we have no way of knowing what other donations have been made by folks like Murdoch and his billionaire comrades. Murdoch confessed that he gave the RGA money due to his friendship with John Kasich, a candidate for governor in Ohio and a former employee of Fox News. Karl Rove is presently an employee of Fox News. Is he also receiving financing from Murdoch? We don’t know because they are not required to disclose it and they keep it obsessively private.

What we do know is that Fox News has a record of shilling for the right. Their daytime anchor Jon Scott (who, ironically, is also the host of their Fox News Watch) once read an RNC document on the air as if it were his own research. He even displayed a graphic on screen that contained the same typo that was in the original RNC memo.

We also know that Fox News relies heavily on the work of the Media Research Center and NewsBusters. We know this because their top news anchor at the time, Brit Hume, said so in public:

Hume: I want to say a word, however, of thanks to Brent and the team at the Media Research Center […] for the tremendous amount of material that the Media Research Center provided me for so many years when I was anchoring Special Report, I don’t know what we would’ve done without them. It was a daily buffet of material to work from, and we certainly made tremendous use of it.

The left has nothing to compare with the media domination of the right. Only the right has their own cable news network. They rule talk radio in part because of conservative broadcasters who deliberately shut out liberal programming. Independent studies show that even the supposedly liberal segments of the press actually lean more to the right in their editorial positions, their guests and sources, and their staffing.

So it seems curious that all of sudden we have right-wingers going bonkers over a couple of donations that will certainly help those organizations, but will have little impact on the broader media landscape. It just proves that the right is focused on maintaining their competitive advantage, that they know the value of “working the refs,” and that they have no shame when it comes to acting out their hypocrisy.

Welcome To The New Fox News Ministries With Brit Hume

Pray for Fox NewsBrothers and sisters, on this, the first Sunday of a new year, a new decade in the sight of our Lord, it is a blessing that we may now profit from the teachings of a new holy messenger of the Word of God. Salvation can now be achieved directly from the Most High – Definition, that is. Our Cable path to redemption is clear and the signals are strong. For we now are relieved of the weekly burden of attending a cold, dank church with uncomfortable pews. Now we can get salvation from the convenience of our sofas. We can worship at the alter of Television and absorb the Good News in the comfort of our homes thanks to the advent of the New Fox News Ministries.

Today’s sermon is one that effects every believer and non-believer alike. It concerns the fate of all who have sinned and, of course, that means everyone. Except for those sinners who have already placed their faith in the Savior and have repented and been saved. They can do whatever the Hell they please. But not so fallen stars like Tiger Woods, whose moral indiscretions require urgent redress. And thank the good Lord that we have the Reverend Brit Hume of the Fox News Ministries to counsel unto the golfer lost in the woods.

Rev. Brit Hume: The Tiger Woods that emerges, once the news value dies out of this scandal, the extent to which he can recover, it seems to me, rests on his faith. He’s said to be a Buddhist. I don’t think that faith offers the kind of forgiveness and redemption that is offered by the Christian faith. So my message to Tiger would be, “Tiger, turn your faith, turn to the Christian faith and you can make a total recovery and be a great example to the world.”

Hallelujah and amen! Repent Brother Woods. It is obvious that those heathen Buddhists have nothing whatsoever to offer a poor sinner. They cannot redeem your cursed soul with the blood of a 2,000 year old martyr, can they? They rely merely on ancient wisdom that holds people accountable for their actions, not by judgment, but by the observance of respect for all creation. They reject the sort of forgiveness and redemption that absolves one of guilt or the suffering of consequences for their behavior. Well, unless you regard karma as a model for a virtuous life and a guide for honorable conduct.

Brother Woods, you must ask yourself if you want to embark on a challenging journey of self-examination and knowledge, or if you wouldn’t rather join the likes of Mark Sanford, David Vitter, John Ensign, Larry Craig, Newt Gingrich, Rudy Giuliani, etc., as adulterous sinners who have been pardoned by the grace of a merciful God. You too can be a great example to the world, just as these bags of scum who have preceded you.

Heed the words of the Rev. Hume, all ye sinners. And follow these teachings as ye have those of Rev. Huckabee and Rev. Beck (see The Gospel according to Beck). Get down on your knees and beseech the Lord Fox for forgiveness. Kneel in the sacred blue glow of the Fox light and submit yourself to its flickering divinity. Because by worshiping at the alter of Fox all sins are forgiven. You are free to start wars; to kill innocents; to torture; to befoul the Earth; to pass judgment on others; to revel in wealth and greed; to deny the less fortunate access to food, housing, or health care; to lie, cheat, steal, and even to live as an infidel with impunity.

Sounds like Heaven, doesn’t it? And what does Buddhism have to offer but a life of peace, awareness, enlightenment, and harmony with all the world? Sounds like Hell, huh? As the Prophet Murdoch said:

“Let there be lie: and there was lie. And Murdoch saw the lie, that it was profitable: and Murdoch divided the lie from the psychotic. And Murdoch called the lie Day, and the psychotic he called Primetime.”

Bless you Brother Brit. And may the Fox be with you.

Brit Hume Confesses To Fox News Right-Wing Bias

The Media Research Center, an uber-conservative media watch organization headed by professional propagandist Brent Bozell, held its annual gala last week to honor the heroes of rightist disinformation and to mock liberals and truth-tellers. The event featured Republican stalwart, war correspondent, and political strategist, Joe the Plumber, who greeted the crowd by announcing that their adulation made him “horny” (I know…eewww).

The main event of the evening was the presentation of the William F. Buckley Jr. Award for Media Excellence to Fox News’ Brit Hume. Hume’s acceptance speech provides further evidence that Fox News has always been a Republican mouthpiece:

Hume: I want to say a word, however, of thanks to Brent and the team at the Media Research Center […] for the tremendous amount of material that the Media Research Center provided me for so many years when I was anchoring Special Report, I don’t know what we would’ve done without them. It was a daily buffet of material to work from, and we certainly made tremendous use of it.

A tremendous amount of material that he made tremendous use of? It sounds like the MRC was Fox News’ wire service. They saved Fox the trouble of having to go out and make up the news by themselves. It is this sort of admission that could get Hume into trouble for saying too much. But this isn’t the first time a Foxian has revealed that they are in the employ of rightist ideologues:

  • Fox Anchor Jon Scott was caught reading directly from a Republican press release as though it were news.
  • Rupert Murdoch admitted that he tried to shape public opinion on the war in Iraq.
  • Murdoch also boasted that his Fox Business Network would be a more “business friendly” network.
  • Chris Wallace, host of Fox News Sunday, noted that he generally agrees with Sean Hannity.
  • In a revealing bit of staff development, George Bush hired Fox anchor Tony Snow to be his press secretary.
  • Just added 3/23/09: In an interview with NPR, Fox News VP Bill Shine blurted out that Fox is the “voice of opposition.”

In addition to Hume’s shout out to the MRC, he lashed out at new media and blogs as being responsible for a narrowing of political views in the media.

Hume: I think that we also have the danger that everything will be presented from one political viewpoint or the other, and that the media that confront us are going to be more partisan than ever.

Exactly. You certainly wouldn’t want to have a network that only presented a single point of view, would you? Just ask Roger Ailes:

Roger Ailes Newsroom