The faux “journalists” at Fox News have long demonstrated that they have a virtually inexhaustible supply of contrived indignation. They stockpile it for occasions when they are justly accused of moral or ethical wrongdoing for which they have no plausible excuse. Then they unleash their manufactured wrath on those who have correctly criticized them.
On Sunday’s episode of Fox’s MediaBuzz, host Howard Kurtz was worked up about a segment of MSNBC’s The Reidout wherein Joy Reid made an entirely appropriate observation about how Fox News has exacerbated the COVID pandemic by repeatedly lying about its severity and discouraging – and even mocking – common sense mitigating behavior such as wearing masks and getting vaccinated.
For instance, one of their top shills, Greg Gutfeld, recently upchucked a rancid rant advising his already deluded viewers to forego getting vaccinated or getting boosted because so-called “natural immunity” was better. Never mind that “doctor” Gutfeld’s diagnosis is contrary to all of the medical science on the subject. Likewise, Fox’s relentless campaign of coronavirus disinformation has resulted in a pandemic disparity wherein “counties that went heavily for Donald Trump have seen much lower vaccination rates and much higher death rates from COVID.
Which makes the segment on Sunday’s show all the more loathsome. Kurtz began by acknowledging that “the distrust of vaccines by some on the right is so deeply embedded that even Donald Trump can’t convince people that otherwise support him or follow him to get the shots.” Indeed, Trump was recently booed by his “fans” for admitting that he got the booster shot.
However, Kurtz did not acknowledge that the primary cause of the distrust he spoke of was lies propagated by Fox News. Then Kurtz entered into the following exchange with Emily Jashinsky of the ultra-rightist Federalist:
Kurtz: In his speech, Biden said people’s choices are affected by the dangerous misinformation on cable TV and social media. Okay, but here MSNBC’s Joy Reid went way further than that. Let’s take a look.
Reid (video): Probably the most vaccinated company in America is Fox News. They’re all vaccinated. They’re gonna live through this and let their viewers and their fans die. Because they don’t give a damn. It’s just clicks to them. They don’t care what happens. It’s just fun for them.
Kurtz: So Joy Reid says says Fox News wants you to die. What?
Jashinsky: And that’s exactly what she said. And this is just one of the many fireable offences she commits regularly on that show. Even though under normal standards those would be considered fireable offences. And she gets very little criticism from her peers. This isn’t normal. If somebody on the right said said this it would be a huge story because it’s so outrageous. It’s so extreme. And it’s a great example of why the left, why the Biden White House, why Democrats actually struggle to get those vaccine numbers up.
— The Federalist (@FDRLST) December 26, 2021
Kurtz’s response to Reid’s commentary materially misrepresented what she said. Reid didn’t say that “Fox News wants you to die.” She said that Fox is “let]ting] their viewers and their fans die. Because they don’t give a damn.” Letting them die is different than wanting it. Reid was making the point that Fox News was irresponsible and unconcerned with the deadly consequences of their politically motivated lies.
Jashinsky’s remarks were even more removed from reality. Since Reid’s commentary could be supported just by quoting Fox News hacks like Gutfeld and Tucker Carlson (who told viewers that the vaccines don’t work), it could hardly be grounds for termination. On the other hand, no one on Kurtz’s program bothered to mention the nauseating and truly fireable offences of Fox Newsers like Lara Logan (who compared Dr. Fauci to the sadistic and murderous Nazi “doctor” Josef Mengele), or Jesse Watters (who urged his viewers to confront Dr. Fauci and to “go in with the kill shot. The kill shot with an ambush […] BOOM! He is dead.”).
The hypocrisy of Fox News is nothing new. It is a network that was founded with a mission to deceive and to advance the interests of the GOP (Greedy One Percent). And it has now evolved into the mouthpiece for the Cult of Trump and the authoritarian dystopia he aspires to rule over. What Reid said about Fox News is unarguably true, and Fox’s denial doesn’t come close to disproving it.
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