Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Strange Attacks Upon FOX

I am not a big fan of the FOX network. I prefer CNN news which, overall, seems to be more unbiased than the others. Yes, you do have the liberal wackos, but there are enough far right nut jobs to counterbalance them. Overall, most of what CNN produces appears to be middle of the road, which is fine by me.

But FOX Network seems to be in the crosshairs of the Obama administration. And while FOX tends to be more conservative-leaning, it is hardly the right wing conspiracy that Obama's group wishes to label it as.

Among attempts to demonize FOX, the Obama administration's has an entire page dedicated to fact-checking Glenn Beck on a number of issues.

Additionally, Anita Dunn, the White House Communications Officer, made the improbable declaration "I mean the reality of it is that Fox News often operates almost as either the research arm or the communications arm of the Republican Party. When they want to treat us like they treat everyone else — but let's not pretend they are a news network the way CNN is." She has also stated "We're going to treat Fox News the way we would treat an opponent."

Does Dunn not realize that there are other news stations out there?

With irresponsible comments like this, can we really trust Obama's administration to make rational decisions in other areas?

Oddly enough, I don't recall a Bush administration site dedicated to arguing family values with Howard Stern. And as kooky as the Clintonistas got at times, I never saw an official site trumpeting "I did not have sexual relations with that woman!"

It is beneath the dignity of the executive branch to dally with such issues: Let the news organizations battle it out between themselves instead of wading into the dogfight.

President Obama, don't you have more pressing matters to attend to?

(Additional recommended reading: What Would Mao Do?)


Uncle Joe said...

There's method to his madness. It makes no sense to most of us, but it fits perfectly into his agenda, which is becoming clearer every week.

Ed said...

I guess I haven't found anything on Fox worth watching these days so I don't even tune into it. That goes for Fox News too.

I too mostly rely on CNN as the most unbiased source out there but like anything, I always like reading both sides of the story and coming to my own conclusions.

Scott said...

Here is the thing. If you were Obama's office and you were trying to pass legislation and further your party's agenda, would you want to deal with a media outlet that only attacks you all the time?

Their pundits are not afraid to outright lie and attack with no facts just ideological hate. There is no balance in that.

The fact that a large number of Americans choose FOX as their news source and tune in daily to the likes of Beck and Coulter (don't actually know if she is on FOX, but she was right?)requires that the administration refute the lies that are too often spouted from their mouths. Until they hold their pundits and staff to a higher standard I would be doing the exact same thing.

Saur♥Kraut said...

Uncle Joe, I am seeing so little that makes sense.

Ed, Yes, I prefer to avoid the TV/Cable stations altogether and get my news via the internet.

Scott, I do understand your point. However, there have always been news outlets that attack the politicians. What news outlet chooses to attack depends on what politician is being targeted.

But this is the first time, to my knowledge, that the President of the United States of America has chosen to descend to such levels.

Kathleen said...

I think this latest "schoolyard" tactic is just part and parcel of the WH modus operandi and the overall ethical collapse of the field of “journalism.” It's a shame to attach what was once a fairly respected title/word to what we have parading around today with their “credentials.” I watch CNN, BBC, Fox & ABC amongst other things. Today, I think that the BBC is the closest thing to ethical journalism available.

daveawayfromhome said...

"Among attempts to demonize FOX..."

As if Faux News has never tried to demonize Obama. Tit-for-tat, I'd say, and Faux threw the first punch. CNN isnt much better. Actually, they all suck, I prefer BBC.

Gary Baker said...

I notice that a lot of people like to attack Fox news for lying. I also notice that if you ask them to point out something concrete that Fox has lied about, you hear massive chirping of crickets, or they point out something that Fox hasn't said or they distort something that Fox has said, or they never really watch Fox at all, they just like to criticize it. With well informed, open minded types like this, it's no wonder that so many people buy into the Big "O"'s lines about how great universal health care will be and how much the economy will be stimulated by "green" jobs. I wonder: when it all turns out to be false, will they be angered, surprised, or just accept that we have always been at war with Oceana?

Three Score and Ten or more said...

I'm with Gary. Actually my news time is fairly split between Fox and CNN, but Glenn Beck was a regional conservative talk show host till CNN hired him as a token conservative columnist (which he was for about four years). Hannity has never pretended to be objective (that's not a pundits job) but most of the NEWS people on Fox have been among the top professionals in the business since before Fox existed.

The Lazy Iguana said...

Howard Stern never claimed to be a "news show". Howard Stern never claimed to have anything other than a goofy entertainment oriented radio show. So there was no reason to ever argue "values" with the man.

Yet people did.

And why should Obama want to have anything to do with Fox? The network who could not put enough people on the air who claimed that the whole fake birth certificate thing was real. Among other things.

Oh, but it is news! Well not exactly. It was made up. The slightest little bit of fact checking would show that. But no. They still decided to "air both sides" by heavily promoting the idea that there was something going on.

When I want to know what if true I watch Fox. Whatever they say - I know the opposite is probably in fact true.

Anyhow how would you feel about a "news network" that decided to air something totally made up about you? Like for example - you like to abuse animals. Yes, you once ran a dog fighting ring! I have the proof! I simply made it up!!

Prove I am wrong. Go on. Try. Ill just claim your proof is forged and keep bringing up "experts" who will say what I want (because they do not like you and I am paying them) in order to cast doubt on your so-called evidence.

This is pretty much what Fox "News" tried. So why would the man want to have anything to do with them? Why does Obama have to have an ounce of respect for that network?

I do think that fact checking people like Glen Beck is pointless. The people who listen to that ass clown are pretty much a lost cause. They do not want to hear anything else - regardless of what the truth is. They seem to think that if they do not like the truth, they can just make up their own truth. They can create their own reality.

So they listen to Beck. They are not interested in any other source - unless they say the same thing Beck says.

Anyone with any sense can fact check Beck for them self. It is not hard. If he says there are not secret alien space craft in Area 51 - that means there ARE secret alien space craft in Area 51. Believe the opposite and it is probably closer to the truth.

The network keeps people like Beck on the air no matter what the hell they say. Then they hide behind the excuse "well he does not express opinions of the network". Yet they keep him on.

And they also admit that they are really more of an "opinion network" than a "news network".

I do not blame them for that. The news is boring. If there is a major event going on it really does not matter which channel you watch. They are all covering the same event. A lot of the time they are even using the same live feed.

Anyhow - I saw the "lets not use Fox" thing coming a long way off. It was easy to see.

If they had said 1/2 as much about me as they have Obama I would ignore them too.

Gary Baker said...

Just and observation - People generally pay for what is entertaining, useful, or they have a reason to value. Now, I honestly don't watch CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, etc., but I do hear a lot of stories that they do talked about (Wolf Blitzer's famous "fact check" of SNL comes to mind). Anyway, I know that Fox beats all the other cable news channels and is challenging the networks. That doesn't say how accurate their reporting is. That simply is a measure of how they are valued compared to the others. In a similar way, people have come to realize the value of the New York Times, and a good deal of other left leaning print media. It's fast reaching a point that without government subsidies, they will fail. I think that will probably be for the best.

Three Score and Ten or more said...

Most of those who disparage Fox do so by hearsay and would not admit watching it under any circumstances. The arguments of Glen Beck are so detailed that fact checking him is probably a full time job. I think some of the conclusions he draws from his facts are open to question but he usually doesn't just state his evidence he usually gives sounces. He states over and over that he is not a newsperson but a commentator. To attribute to Fox everything that he says, or Hannity says, or OReilly says is stupid. Their News people are superior. Britt Hume was the investigating arm of Drew Pearson, probably the only commentator who found so many facts about so many people that J Edgar Hoover had a Drew Pearson division. He is the most principled and forthright person on the air. Shepard Smith, in a world where jounalism was real would have won a Peabody for his coverage of the hurricane in New Orleans. He was head and shoulders ahead of and better than any one else. Chris Wallace is the most cogent interviewer On the air. (unlike Chris Wallace who is always more interested in flame than in accurate information.) Don't watch Fox. Watch CNBC (the real totally biased Network.)

Gary Baker said...

Still, when only one station is moving on a potentially big story as Fox regularly does, it can make you wonder about their credibility. For example, they jumped on those videos showing ACORN members working to defraud the government a lot faster than any of the other news stations. I think a CNN editor made some comment about having "real news" to go after.

Then there was all of that stuff about how Barrack Obama was the number two receiver of lobby money in the Senate after only being in less than two years. I don't recall the other stations wanting to touch that. Or his mortgage deal with Tony Rezko. Or his wife's patient dumping scheme.

Not that I blame the other stations. When you have your entire news staff out diving dumpsters to try to prove that Sarah Palin's child is really her grandchild, those second rate stories just have to take a back seat...

Three Score and Ten or more said...

Posted long after the "post" but it is interesting that the two goofs who really pushed this are suddenly going into early retirement. (I hope this had a salutory effect upon all efforts to cripple the first amentment.