Neil Cavuto Moves In On Carrot Top’s Territory

Thanks to Fox News honcho Michael Clemente, who revealed that Your World with Neil Cavuto is not a news program, we can now evaluate the program for what it is. Clemente explicitly left out Cavuto’s program when he said that Fox’s news schedule is from 9:00am to 4:00pm and 6:00pm to 8:00pm. Cavuto’s show starts at 4:00pm.

So what can we say about this entertainment/opinion hour? Well, for one thing, Cavuto seems to regard himself as a humorist. He spends at least as much time cracking what he thinks are jokes as he does yelling at, and interrupting, his guests. He closes every program with a “Common Sense” essay that he stuffs with lame puns. I guess that’s why they call him a pundit. (Oh damn. Now I’m doing it).

But that isn’t really what’s at the core of his act. When we look closely, it is clear that Cavuto has a deep appreciation for stunts and props. That would make him a threat to the reigning master of prop comedy, Carrot Top.

Some recent examples include his interviews with guests who had nothing substantive to contribute to any public debate, but were coincidentally engaged in some field of work that Cavuto found relevant. For instance, he brought in a Cadillac dealer when discussing a proposed tax on generous employer sponsored health plans that were being called “Cadillac Plans.” Of course, the dealer had no particular expertise in insurance policy or taxation, but he did have a big chunk of real estate with some GM cars parked on it. Another example was Cavuto’s dialogue with the CEO of AstroTurf Technologies. This non-illuminating discussion was sparked by the question of whether organizers of Tea Party events were really grassroots citizen groups or well-funded lobbyists and foundations. Once again, nothing in this segment advanced understanding of the issue because the AstroTurf chief’s experience had more to do with synthetic fiber products than with campaign development and event planning.

In addition to Cavuto’s unique selection of irrelevant guests, he also plotted some pathetic stunts. For several days Cavuto was obsessed with Democrats who were holding meetings “behind closed doors.” Cavuto couldn’t get over the fact that there were doors and that they weren’t open. He seems to think that Democrats are obligated to allow Republicans and Fox News into private caucus meetings. Does he also think that Democrats should have free access to Republican caucus gatherings? Cavuto’s response was to invite Mr. Handyman to the show. Mr. Handyman demonstrated some techniques for keeping doors open, like wedge stoppers. On another occasion, Cavuto played clips of Dora the Explorer when President Obama declined to be interviewed by Cavuto or others at Fox. I still don’t know what point that was supposed to be making, but Cavuto was clearly hurt that the President had snubbed him.

But the piece de resistance was hiring a speed reader to plow through the voluminous health care bill. His apparent intent was to draw attention to the sheer size of the bill. So he has the world’s faster speed reader inhabit a little box in the corner of the screen where viewers can watch him discard pages unto the floor at about a second per page. Unfortunately for Cavuto, this prank doesn’t really help his argument. First of all, it is another pointless exercise because, although this fellow can read fast, he can’t contribute any informed analysis after having consumed the bill. He is not a doctor or a lawyer or a health policy expert of any kind.

However, the big failure on Cavuto’s part is that the only thing his shenanigans accomplished was to demonstrate how quickly the bill could be read. The speed reader completed his task in less than an hour. Even if someone else took ten times as long, it proves that it could easily be done in a day or two. And if it were split up between several staffers with specific areas of expertise, it could be done even faster. So the length of the bill is really pretty easy to digest. I also have to wonder what Cavuto’s alternative is. Would he prefer a short bill of a dozen or so pages? It seems to me that that would be a recipe for legislative disaster as it could not possibly anticipate the myriad complexities of a major health care system overhaul.

None of that matters, though, if your goal is simply to amuse, and to pull goofy props out of a steamer trunk. That’s the level of understanding that Cavuto is presenting to his audience. And since his audience is made of people who watch Fox, he’s probably still a little over their heads.


9 thoughts on “Neil Cavuto Moves In On Carrot Top’s Territory

  1. Sounds like he’s imitating Beck, but being Beck-lite: a bunch of scatterbrained stunts without the maliciousness. But the audience wants the mean-spiritedness, which Cavuto must realize, so I guess that means Cavuto just doesn’t have it in him to go full force ugly. How’s that for a backhanded compliment?

  2. Here is an idea… Don’t watch Fox News. As much as you bitch and complain about Fox News, you wouldn’t think there is more important things to talk about. If people wanna watch Fox, big deal. You shouldn’t get your pannies in a wad. If you think it sucks so bad then don’t watch. Your unhealthy obession with Fox is growing out of control. How about you just watch MSNBC and be happy with that. It’s like you get joy from bitching.

    • Thanks for your suggestion, but how ever would I pass the day if I didn’t bitch about Fox? And even worse, what would you do if I stopped?

      So I have to continue. For your sake. For the children. I’m on a mission from God.

    • I love how Fox defenders think anyone who doesn’t like fox is some how oblivious to the the rest of the BS in the MSM.

      And these mental giants still don’t understand that this site is called News Corpse for a reason.

      • Exactly.

        I don’t understand faux news apologists, and what they don’t seem to understand is that not everyone who believes the MSM is destroyed is a leftist. I am actually a libertarian, socially very liberal, fiscally right leaning moderate (yes, Mr. Goldberg, we do exist).

        The fact is you have 3 choices for a 24 hr ‘news’ network. 1. The anna nicole smith show
        2. The crazy right wing conspiracy theory channel
        3. The sometimes left leaning, sometimes right leaning, still not really news channel

        The only option for truly objective television journalism out there is the Lehrer Report, but even there I think it is too political.

        The whole system has been hijacked by this infotainment B.S. The Becks, Olbermanns, Maddows, O’Reilleys, Dobbs, and Scarboroughs of this world should not have a voice on a ‘news’ channel. Nor should they give the impression that they are reporters, fair and balanced, objective, or whatever the hell else you want to call it.

        And no, I don’t watch any of it. But I have to live in the world where people do, and people who take it seriously, and allow it to influence their decision making.

        • I appreciate your analysis of the sorry state of the media. I would, however, offer this disagreement:

          While Olbermann and Maddow are certainly opinionated and entertaining, they are a far cry from the Becks and O’Reillys. First, they do not refer to themselves as reporters. Second, they are meticulous about presenting their opinions factually. The Fox crowd pretends that they are fair, balanced, and objective, when it is so obviously not the case. And worse, they traffic in lies.

          It is possible to be opinionated and honest. MSNBC is far more observant of that than Fox.

        • I don’t disagree with you at all.

          The sad part is that the MSM actually needs Olbermann and Maddow to balance out all the crazy on the other side. There are far more right wingers on television than left.

          What I really wish is that they all went away and there was no need for the balancing act. I wish people would form their own opinions based on factual objective data, and not need to listen to crazy people to form their opinions. Unfortunately, that is probably too much to ask of Homo sapiens.

  3. Well I live in Australia and I find it difficult to believe that FAUX NEWS,(a)can call its self a news program.(b)that anyone with half a brain would believe what the spout.(c) you can run party political propaganda and say its news.
    Did any of the so called opinion presenters ever sell used cars,as they have the creditably of a used car salesman

  4. The author is definately drinking the Kool-aide. He’s on the right track though.

    If he keeps watching Fox he may begin to see the massive deception that is being perpetrated by the left. And, if he were to listen just a little more closely, he would hear that most commentators on Fox are just as upset with Republicans as they are with Democrats. BOTH parties have betrayed us in favor of maintaining & expanding their own power and have allowed our economy to be sabatoged by the irresponsible monetary policy of the Fed.

    Predictably, politicians will continue to ignore us and the Constitution & will do their best to pit us against each other to try to escape the blame that they deserve.

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