Fox News Makes Shameful Attack On MSNBC’s Touré

In a Fox News op-ed, Dan Gainor, of the uber-conservative Media Research Center, hurled some disparaging and nearly incoherent insults at Touré, one of the hosts of MSNBC’s The Cycle.

Gainor took issue with a commentary Touré delivered (video below) about the GOP’s unfounded and politically-motivated attack on UN ambassador Susan Rice. Touré made some rather cogent points about the spectacle Rice’s critics, particularly Sen. John McCain, were making over a manufactured controversy. McCain and others seem feverishly obsessed with Amb. Rice’s comments on a number of Sunday news programs regarding Benghazi. Any fair observer would have to recognize that what Rice said was provided to her by intelligence authorities and was the best information available (or permitted to be disclosed) at the time. But fair observation is not the business that Gainor and the MRC are in.

Gainor’s tirade was topped with a headline that read “MSNBC Anchor Touré makes shameful attack on McCain.” What constitutes shamefulness to Gainor is hard to figure. His specific complaints were that Touré was playing the “race card” in his remarks. But Gainor’s examples were not the least bit focused on race. For instance, Gainor cited Touré saying that McCain…

“…gave us the horrible optics of he and Lindsey Graham as old, white, establishment folks wrongly and repeatedly attacking a much younger black woman moments after an election in which blacks and women went strongly blue.”

Gainor’s shallow grasp of the English language resulted in his interpreting that as a racial criticism of McCain. However, the rest of the English speaking world would notice that Touré was speaking about the “optics” of the criticism, not whether there was any actual racism involved. Touré was plainly addressing the potential harm for the Republican Party in being perceived as insensitive to racial and gender issues by repeatedly attacking minorities and women. That’s not an accusation of racism or sexism, it is an acknowledgement that the subjects of such attacks might be less likely to support those who make the attacks. That’s not only common sense, it is precisely what occurred on election day a couple of weeks ago. And to affirm how cognitively-challenged Gainor is, he added this as further evidence of Touré’s alleged race-baiting:

“Never one to ignore a chance to paint all Republicans as racist, he added one more dig: ‘Looks like the GOP is already laying the foundation for losing in 2016.'”

How is that one more “dig” that paints anyone as racist? If anything, it is one more affirmation that Touré was speaking only about political matters. Nevertheless, Gainor is determined to turn this into a “shameful” racial affair. With that purpose in mind Gainor reached back to a September column wherein Touré wrote “Part of my job when I speak about politics is to speak up for black people and say things black people need said.” If Gainor thinks that that is shameful, he needs an EKG EEG stat, because there is good reason to suspect that there is no brain activity going on his head. The reason that it is important to have diversity in the media is precisely because it provides perspectives that otherwise would not be represented. Our media is enhanced by the inclusion of minorities and women who say the things that these previously excluded members of society need said.

Notwithstanding the fact that Gainor’s tantrum over Touré’s commentary was ridiculous and he failed to identify anything remotely racial about it, Fox News is demonstrably racist and the evidence of that is in its coverage. While it may be too broad to say that Fox’s attacks on Amb. Rice alone constitute racism, take a look at some of the most prominent targets of Fox’s smear machine and ask yourself what they have in common:

Fox News Racism

That pretty much says it all. If Touré had wanted to make an issue of racism, he would have plenty of evidence.

Fox News Lies About Alleged Tom Ricks Apology

For the past couple of days the media has been abuzz with reports about foreign policy expert, Tom Ricks, calling Fox News “a wing of the Republican Party” while on Fox News (video below). It was a perfectly appropriate remark in the context of the discussion, but Fox host Jon Scott abruptly ended the interview, which only made the controversy more prominent.

Fox News Tom Ricks

Ricks’ observation that Fox is the media division of the Republican Party is neither original nor unique. Many others have noticed the same obvious bias, including the former director of communications for the White House, Anita Dunn. And conservatives like David Frum have recognized that Fox has become even more influential in GOP politics than an ordinary PR firm would be.

Since the on-air dust-up, Fox VP of News, Michael Clemente, told The Hollywood Reporter that Ricks had apologized to him off the air. That’s a convenient tale considering there is no evidence or witnesses to the alleged apology. Clemente went even further by personally insulting Ricks saying that he “doesn’t have the strength of character to do that publicly.”

And it doesn’t end there. Ricks later responded to Clemente in remarks to the Hollywood Reporter saying…

“Please ask Mr. Clemente what the words of my supposed apology were. I’d be interested to know. Frankly, I don’t remember any such apology.”

Now, this morning, Clemente fired back again calling Ricks’ response “utterly dishonest,” and snidely needling him:

“I’ll refresh his memory – what he said following the segment was, ‘Sorry… I’m tired from a non-stop book tour.’ Perhaps now he can finally get some rest.”

This is typical defensive behavior from Fox News. They do not countenance criticism, and when they encounter it they lash out wildly at their critics. One memorable example of this is when a study was released by the University of Maryland that Confirms That Fox News Makes You Stupid, Clemente hit back by insulting the University’s students who had nothing to do with the study. He also alleged that the university was ranked as the “Best Party School,” by the Princeton Review, which was patently false.

So we have evidence that Clemente will brazenly lie when he is confronted by criticism. Consequently, it would be foolish to accept his assertion that Ricks had apologized in the privacy of Clemente’s office. And why would anyone assume that an executive at a network that makes up the news they broadcast would be the least bit averse to making up conversations that cast critics in a negative light?