The Making Of A Fox News Headline: State Of The Union Edition

President Obama’s State of the Union address was generally well received by a majority of Americans with polling showing high approval for the speech (CNN, PPP). But oddly enough, Fox News managed to put a negative spin on the public reaction.

What makes this particularly odd is that the article that Fox posted on their web site had mostly positive things to say about the speech. However, the headline could not have been more downcast: “Obama’s State of the Union speech a well-crafted, hollow recitation of nothing more than words.”

Fox News

A hollow recitation of words? As opposed to a recitation of shoes, or bees? How about a recitation of pie? It is pretty much a given that, by definition, all recitations are of words. This may be a detail that escapes the linguistic geniuses at Fox who can’t seem to even get through the second paragraph of the article with making numerous grammatical errors.

Fox News Grammer

More to the point, the headline Fox composed was utterly detached from the content of the article. At no point did the author, fake Democrat Doug Schoen, write that the speech was “a hollow recitation of nothing more than words.” That was an invention of the headline writer. Schoen did, however, write that the speech was “well-written, well-crafted” and “hit all the right notes.” He also said that it “was a great speech.” None of that made it into the headline.

Had Fox wanted to disparage Obama without resorting to fiction, there was plenty in Schoen’s screed from which to choose. Schoen used much of his space to blame Obama for the obstructionism on the part of congressional Republicans. But the headline writer must have thought that angle would be too steep for the Fox audience. All things considered, that was probably the right call.

Sarah Palin Look-a-Like Scott Brown Takes Her Place At Fox News

The worst kept secret in cable news has just been confirmed. After having lost the senate seat he held for a mere two years, Scott Brown has been hired as a contributor by Fox News.

Scott BrownFilling a role that was held by Sarah Palin until her recent dismissal, Brown is the new beauty pageant contestant turned politician who was unable to complete a full term in office to be scooped up Fox, just like Palin. His unique experience having done nothing of substance while in office other than criticize the President makes him the perfect acquisition for a network that has made its reputation by avoiding substance and bashing the Obama administration.

Fox has been struggling to persuade people that they are moderating their tone after having been embarrassed by election coverage that was grossly biased and detached from reality. So they canned Palin and Dick Morris as scapegoats for their ineptitude. However, they kept the core of their conservative message machine with Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, Megyn Kelly, Neil Cavuto, the Fox & Friends Kindergarten Krew, etc. What’s more, they hired Erick Erickson (who called a Supreme Court justice a “goat-fucking child molester”) and Mark Levin (who thinks even Republicans are socialists) was tapped to fill the Palin void on the Hannity show.

Anyone who believes that Fox intends to adjust their programming to be more neutral is terminally naive. They are merely throwing a life saver to one of their favorite politicians who is still a potential candidate for either the senate or governorship of Massachusetts in 2014. Fox is well known for employing prospective candidates for political office despite the breach of ethics that presents. They are currently allowing Geraldo Rivera to host his own show while testing the waters for a senate race in New Jersey.

Fox apparently was nervous about not having a Palinesque figure on their payroll, and now they can rest easier with Brown filling her designer pumps. Thanks to Brown, Fox’s tradition of shallow analysis and strident harangues will proceed without interruption.