In Defense of Fox News

The network is biased? So what?


Those of you paying even the slightest attention these days realize that President Barack Obama has been the target of a near-criminally biased and antagonistic mass media.

Someone had to put a stop to the madness.

The organization most persistently engaged in reporting on issues that put the administration in a poor light has been Fox News. Or should I say Fox "News." Unfair. Unbalanced. Uncooperative.

"They're not really a news station," White House senior adviser David Axelrod recently explained.

"It's not a news organization so much as it has a perspective," chief of staff Rahm Emanuel added. Mao enthusiast and communications director Anita Dunn claims that Americans should not "pretend" Fox is a "news network the way CNN is."

For those who missed it, the key phrase to remember is "not a news organization."

Dunn also asserted that when the president "goes on Fox, he understands he's not going on it really as a news network at this point. He's going on to debate the opposition." Who knew debating the future of the nation is such a ghastly thought?

So what is the underlying rationale for this hypersensitive strategy of trying to delegitimize the voice of cable opposition? "We're doing what we think is important to make sure news is covered as fairly as possible," a White House official explained to Politico.

It's about time someone charged the White House with the task of "making sure" news coverage is "fair." It's "important" work, you see. After all, who better than the executive branch—supposedly in the business of representing the entire nation—to decide whether a station qualifies as a legitimate news organization?

Then again, does biased political coverage disqualify one from reporting legitimate and useful news stories? Fox News may not be able to unsheathe the intellectual rigor of Obama favorites David Letterman and Jay Leno, but it has covered numerous stories in the past few months that otherwise would have gone unnoticed.

Remember that ACORN's penchant for aiding the child-enslaving pimp set was a valid story. Uncovering the radical ramblings of Van Jones—a man tasked with creating "green" jobs even though he never had created a job for anyone but himself—was legitimate enough for the czar to abdicate his crown. The National Endowment for the Arts' attempt to politicize art was genuine enough to elicit a White House apology.

And whatever its intent, Dunn's inane admission that all-star mass murderer Mao Zedong was one of her "favorite political philosophers" (insert Hitler for Mao, a Bush administration figure for Dunn and stir) is a story worth hearing.

Hey, Mao was no dummy. That's probably why Dunn is employing the noted dictator's notion that one should "despise the enemy strategically but take him seriously tactically." In this case, it is precisely the legitimacy of the stories Fox News covers—rather than the bias of the station—that drives the administration to conflate news with opinion.

The public doesn't need to be reminded that Fox News Channel is a right-wing cable news network any more than it needs to hear that MSNBC is a left-wing network. We can handle all the opinions.

In reality, the symbiotic relationship between right and left continues. Good for Fox News. Good for Obama.

Even so, it doesn't change the fact that the nation's most dominant government entity—an entity that allegedly represents all Americans—is using tax dollars and its considerable influence to try to squash a privately owned news organization that disagrees with it.

In the sinister years of the former administration, this would have been referred to as chilling free speech. And if this administration can't handle one cable station's opposition, what does that tell the American people about its mettle on issues that matter?

David Harsanyi is a columnist at The Denver Post and the author of Nanny State. Visit his Web site at


NEXT: What the Huck?

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  1. Is this the first secret thread of the day?

    1. What the BHO admin is trying to do appears to actually have started with a March 2008 Brave New Films video.

  2. 350 posts last night wasn’t enough?

    1. If you remove the Chicago Tom/MNG show it is a lot shorter.

      1. I don’t understand why people feed Obama-cocksucking trolls.

        They get fed enough jizz by their messiah.

  3. Link: Stossel, Oreilly disagree on pot.…..182701.asp

    1. that’s because O’Reilly is about as close to a fascist as they can come. And that’s granting him the courtesy of assuming he isn’t a fascist already.

      1. Chris has a lot of nerve calling O’Rielly a fascist.
        I doubt that he even know what the word means. Fascists advocate the creation of a single-party state. Fascist governments forbid and suppress openness and opposition to the government and the fascist movement

        Sounds to me like the fascist is Obama.

        He and his ilk are always quick to call people names that they disagree with. So how about this Chis? Let’s think of a name for you.

        You’re a left wing crybaby.

    2. Note: O’Reilly and [insert name] disagree on [insert subject].

      He pretty much hates everything.

      1. He likes airing videos of naked teens having sex.

        1. That’s why you should get your entertainment from me. All of the sex depicted on the blog pr0n links and in the books is adults! Mostly women, all beautiful!

          For the other stuff, see SugarFree.

          1. That lesbian link from the other day was outstanding.

    3. I saw Stossel on O’Reilly last night. All I can say to him is that, Johnny, if you’re gonna be on O’Reilly every Tuesday, you need to get a stronger spine and be more aggressive. Bill just dominated that entire conversation and made you sound like a mealy-mouthed liberal.

      1. Of course O’Reilly dominated the conversation. If you shouted down the other guy, you’d dominate conversations too. ^_^

      2. On the contrary, Stossel should remain civil and comment on how O’Reilly just wants to have guests on that he can shout over.

        1. It is impossible to shout over Stossel’s glorious mustache, try as one might.

          1. Stossel has nothing to gain by showing up on O’Reilley’s show. O’Reilly has nothing but contempt for libertarian ideas. He’s a Christian drug warrior, a blue nose. He believes in Big Government until it tries to take away his precious manger scenes. Oh yes, the annual “War On Christmas” tirades are just around the corner. Flee, John, flee!

    4. Speaking of Stossel, has anyone found his new show on Fox Business Channel? I thought it was supposed to start this week.

  4. And if this administration can’t handle one cable station’s opposition, what does that tell the American people about its mettle on issues that matter?

    But it’s not just Fox. There’s a vast right-wing conspiracy!

    1. better than a vast wing-nut conspiracy

    2. Not just a FOX “vast right-wing conspiracy”. One that is so laden with nepatism and that refuses to even consider there are other family members the conservatives are eating at each others throats and hopefully soon enough will bust the jugular.

  5. I agree that it doesn’t matter that Fox is biased (every news station is), I just don’t like two people: Sean Hannity and Bill O’ Reilly. First off, Hannity is a nutjob, beligerently attacking his opposers and spewing neo-con filth and claiming it to be right. Second, O’ Reilly claims that his show is the no-spin zone, and is fair and balanced, but in reality his show is obviously biased and he, too, does not give the opposition a fair chance.

    1. Person appropriating the name “John Galt”:

      Have you considered that some readers here might be offended by your appropriation of the name of the great hero from Atlas Shrugged? At the very least, its presumptuous in the extreme. Something tells me that the character John Galt wouldn’t be posting here, and that he wouldn’t agree with many of your opinions.

      I find it amusing that what you call “neo-con filth” probably includes many perspectives that would be shared by the Ayn Rand Institute, for example.

      How about coming up with your own, original name?

  6. While I agree with the content, that article was more an attack on the administration than a “defence” of Fox News.

    1. The best defense is a good offense… and the best defence is a good offence.

    2. True, but criticizing the administration’s efforts to shut down opposition media is a more worthy endeavor anyway.

  7. Since when “news” in US is defined as “part of the propaganda department” of the government? Thought this only happens in the communist (or Nazi Germany). In the age of government hand-out, I guess kiss up government, regardless what system you are under is most fashionable (and profitable) profession.

  8. Lamar Alexander to Obama: Don’t Create An Enemies List:

    If the President and his top aides treat people with different views as enemies instead of listening to what they have to say, they’re likely to end up with a narrow view and a feeling that the whole world is out to get them. And as those of use who served in the Nixon administration know, that can get you into a lot of trouble.…..e.asp#more

  9. Remember that when the feds start bailing out the newspapers, they’re going to have to decide what’s a “real” newspaper.

    1. Exactly … they are preparing the ground to say that only certain publications qualify for subsidies. Naturally, the ones that they consider “unbiased”.

  10. So bias in favor of the government is good; bias against the government is bad. Granted, each network changes its pro position to anti as the parties swap out, but it’s just a little creepy to attack Fox in this manner. Obviously, Fox is calling out the government on some legitimate issues, which is why the attack is going on. Certainly, the administration wouldn’t bother if it hadn’t been stung. Better the loyal media, that will close its collective eyes to virtually any abuse of power so long as it’s committed by “their” guy.

    Yeah, Fox sucks. But so does the rest of TV news and for about the same reason.

    1. I’m slightly suspicious that they are doing this because FOX is going to break a big story or something …

      Or it’s revenge for ACORN.

  11. The more air-time that Fox spends on this controversy instead of exposing the adminstration’s true intentions and the consequences of their policy, the more the White House has already won.

    I keep hearing people say the White is stupid for doing this, or they can’t win, or they’re just making themselves look bad. Guess what?! They’ve already won! Fox (and other networks) are covering this story instead!!!

    Do you really think this isn’t a pre-calculated campaign?

    1. I wouldn’t be so sure… we often hear that people are more likely to read a book after they hear it has been deemed “politically incorrect” or “banned.” The Obamatrons may just be making people more likely to listen to what Fox has to say.

      1. Yeah, but you’re missing the point. What are they saying now? A greater portion of their time is spent bashing the White House for demeaning Fox.

        The administration calls that a win. They are on the verge of nation-altering legislation. They would rather hear the debates about the fairness of FoxNews instead of about the consequences of their policies!

        1. Dude, it’s a 24 hour news network. Time spent bashing the white house for demeaning fox is most likely time spent not covering balloon boy or whatever the popular fluff story of the moment is. I doubt they’re taking resources from their more serious investigation (I use serious as a relative term here).

        2. That’s a false dichotomy. Fox isn’t about to stop reporting on the disastrous consequences of disastrous policies just because it’s started reporting on the disastrous personalities implementing those policies.

          0-boy and his thugs have truly bitten off more than they can chew trying to win an argument through Chicago thuggery against people who no longer have to buy ink by the barrel to make a laughingstock of the creepy crook currently occupying the President’s seat and all the criminals and traitors running his administration.

          Every 9/11 truther nutjob, every openly Communist Czar, every tax-evading tax-law-writer, and every other flamboyant pervert and retard in this administration can now count on having his (or her) less-than-flattering history of pederasty, totalitarianism, and genocidal hatred of all humanity displayed on Fox for all the world–or at least for all the swing voters–to see.

          To use a recently rehabilitated cliche from Nixon’s time, would you buy a used car from these people? If you wouldn’t, why would you buy anything else they’re selling you now? Such is the reasoning by which the viewers will reject the disastrous policies even before Fox gets around to telling them about the disastrous consequences.

  12. “Then again, does biased political coverage disqualify one from reporting legitimate and useful news stories?”

    In the case of Fox News, often-time YES.…..77028.html

    Like that conspiracy involving those scary black Obama thugs that turned out to be… a fraternal dance group. Of course, Fox will not report the corrections and apparently we can’t count on Reason to report on anything that doesn’t support the ideological missions of their articles. So yes, if we focus on a few stories and fail to mention the other stories which were NOT legitimate and were not professional in their methodology, then Fox News becomes a blessing–in fact, I can see where Harsanyi would find kinship with them, due to his own tendencies to keep it simple and stupid, even if it means leaving out a few minor details 😉

    1. You’re not John. Shut the fuck up, fake John.

      1. i find fraternal dance groups scary.

        though i don’t know exactly what they are.

    2. Linking to Huffington Post to prove the biased political coverage of Fox News. Simple and stupid and ironic.

      1. The ultimate irony here is how fast you forgot that this entire conversation is in response to the quote “Then again, does biased political coverage disqualify one from reporting legitimate and useful news stories?”

        Is what the Huffington Post is saying untrue? Isn’t the point of the very article you’re defending to criticize that kind of thinking? Think.

        1. He may have missed an irony, but you are engaging in special pleading if you (1) admit Huffington Post is biased and (2) use an article from an admittedly biased source to prove (3) that Fox News’ bias gets in the way of their legitimate coverage.

          Who is to say that Huffington Post’s bias does not get in the way of their legitimate coverage? Particularly, who is to say that their bias does not get in the way of the specific article you cite?

          Your argument requires prior acceptance that only the quality Fox news reporting and not the Huffington Post is affected by biased.

          Now fuck off.

          1. I never argued against it. I said that Fox News legitimately reports in some instances and makes shit up in others.

    3. “Then again, does biased political coverage disqualify one from reporting legitimate and useful news stories?”

      In the case of Fox News CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, and all the lickers of 0bama’s anus over at the Puff Ho, often-time every single time, YES.

    4. John, Yor quoting the Huffington post is the most idiotic thing I’ve seen in this thread.

  13. David you stole the words right out of my mouth.

  14. to try to squash a privately owned news organization that disagrees with it.

    Since when does accusing a news organization of mostly not being one constitute squashing?

    Since Obama doesn’t even seem to be actively looking to reinstitute the Fairness Act, this is pretty thin gruel from Harsanyi.

    1. What, you don’t know what a shot across the bow looks like when you see one? You think this kind of talk isn’t a way of finding out how much this treasonous administration can get away with doing before it actually does it? I’d get my vision checked if I were you.

  15. “Pingback| 10.21.09 @ 12:55PM”

    What the fuck is this gay crap?

    1. “gay crap”–sounds like another knuckle-dragger. We’re not ignorant homophobes here. We don’t use phrases like that; save it for Fox News’ site.

      1. Is that John of Planet Houston?

        1. Houston?

          1. King of Australia

      2. save it for Fox News’ site

        Or The City Paper, Act Up and anyplace with a rainbow or pink triangle as part of their logo.

      3. Quick, everyone switch to their secret FOX-news watching right-wing racist alternate personas and get over there.

        You know, MNG knows it’s true anyway. We’re all closet Republicans.

        1. I would imagine a lot of you really are paleo-conservatives who think you’re libertarians. Maybe not closet republicans, but as far closet knuckle draggers, I’m certain they’re plentiful here.

          1. You’re like the giant taco that craps ice cream on South Park (Earth as a reality show episode), except you constantly crap logical fallacies.

          2. You sound like a fetus who imagines it is human.

  16. Laying the foundation, dude, laying the foundation.

  17. It is Tbone to whom I last spoke.

  18. I think http://glennbeckrapedandmurder… is the most fair and balanced site. They report on things that “real news” do not, and they could potentially uncover important truths; they’re just asking questions here. What I don’t understand is why, while I support Fox News right to say what they wish and even report on things that are not true, they are making efforts to get this site shut down.

    Kind of ironic that Fox News are martyrs for attempts to be destroyed by their enemies, and they readily report on their struggles as outsiders in the media, while they attempt to destroy their critics for doing the same thing. It’s almost like everyone is just naturally operating in their own self-interest! But of course that can’t be true.

    1. What the heck is your point in linking to this stupid parody site? Pretty lame, dude.

      1. If you have to ask, I’d just let go of any hope of you getting the point.

        Obviously you don’t see the irony: Glenn Beck claims that people are trying to sensor him, this is America and he can say and suggest what he wants etc., yet he’s filed formal papers to get this site criticizing him removed. But I wouldn’t expect David to ever write on that, since I have read plenty of his articles, and he doesn’t differ too far from Foxc News himself. Therefore, it would make sense for him to side with them, since he’ll probably get an interview on Glenn Beck whining about big government in the near future.

        1. From a quick perusal of that stupid web site you linked to, it’s apparent that when it originally began it wasn’t obviously a parodic site. Now that they have modified it so that it is obviously a satire to give themselves cover, he has no case any more.

          The right to free speech obviously doesn’t include the right to commit slander, and I suspect even you understand that perfectly well.

        2. Ah, more childish arguments. If they do it, we can do it too!

          Fuck off for a second time.

  19. Sometimes I wonder how observant we are.

    Anytime I hear a politician start talking about re-enacting the “fairness doctrine”, I always check to see what other legislation they’re pushing. Why? Because they only seem to bring it up to keep talk radio busy. Same thing they’re doing now to keep FoxNews (and the rest of the media) busy while they shovel dirt over the grave that is the American Medical system.

    Sure, they’re still talking about that, but every minute spent on the whole FoxNews/White House feud, is a minute NOT spent on ferretting out the consequences of their proposals.

    If you guys think the White House hasn’t thought this through, I’m afraid you’re missing the point of what they’re doing.

    1. I don’t think the health care bill is going to a floor vote any time soon.

  20. Even so, it doesn’t change the fact that the nation’s most dominant government entity?an entity that allegedly represents all Americans?is using tax dollars and its considerable influence to try to squash a privately owned news organization that disagrees with it.

    Meh. What do you mean by “squash”. I’m amenable to “using tax dollars to …” arguments. But the president has freedom of speech too. Indeed, the bully pulpit is pretty much the whole of the job (or at least should be. At any rate it’s a power I don’t mind the executive exercising). Now if the IRS starts auditing FOX talking heads, or “delivery trucks” with satellite dishes are parked out front of the newsroom. Well that would be different.

    But I think the President lost when he decided to fight. It’s just about the least effective use of political clout to badmouth your opponent. Just picking up the gauntlet is an acknowledgment of defeat.

    Nixon, and Bush Jr. didn’t deal well with a hostile press. But I can’t recall this sort of clumsy misstep from an administration that apparently thinks a fawning press is an executive power enumerated in the constitution.

    1. Read the post directly above yours. It’s not a misstep.

      Is it a misstep when the bull hits the matador’s cape? The matador purposefully put the cape out there. In your logic, the matador was clumsy because he let the bull hit it.

      1. Mike,

        I think you nailed it.

        Media-bias/Fairness Doctrine is irrelevant for the Obama WH because they can do it at a later time through the FCC and localization.

        They are purposely throwing out softballs to distract from the fastball that is coming.

        Although, I would also say it has cost them significantly. Probably a shrewd move that has turned out so far to be a losing proposition.

        (Now that you have mentioned this, I will be wary of all chatter about Fairness Doctrine and see if there might be other nefarious issues floating in the legislative body…)

  21. got no objection to any news site being as biased as they want.
    but i don’t see why politicians have to appear on their tv shows if they don’t want to.

  22. Warren,

    Don’t forget that government actions can have a chilling effect on speech. That’s unconstitutional in and of itself. There’s also the issue of the action being viewpoint discrimination–where’s the equally valid criticism of, say, MSNBC?

    1. “chilling effect” that sounds familiar. Is that similar to when the W.H. collects web user data ie comments from websites then claims to be doing such because they are ” official correspondence with the president.”

      “The National Legal and Policy Center, a government ethics watchdog, said archiving the sites would have a “chilling effect” on Web site users who might wish to leave comments critical of the administration. ”…..sers-data/

      Who needs J. Edgar Hoover chinzy second rate surveillance of ordinary Americans, we have the White House, cut out the middle man surveil millions more in less time at..well, maybe not half the cost, maybe 9 billion times the cost, we don’t know because those tricky little angels in the White House, in the spirit of the most “transparent” administration in history refuse to be …wat’s a good word… transparent?

  23. One angle nobody is mentioned is how similar this is to the Bush administration’s treatment of Al Jazeera and it’s consequences.

    Al Jazeera was and is definitely biased. But refusing to appear on the channel just meant that Arab viewers were deprived of ANY access to the American point of view. Instead it became an echo-chamber for anti-Americanism.

    In a similar way, the Obama administration boycotting FOX just means that FOX viewers (who are more than just Republicans) won’t hear the Democrat’s side of the story.

    1. I appreciate your opinions, Hazel, you seem quite intelligent. But I’m not sure what you’re saying. Half of Fox’s (is it FOX?) is alledgedly Democrats and Independants. And although I don’t personally own a TV, and realise hard core partisans tend to watch one or the other CNN/MSNBC or FOX, does the average Democrat or Republican only watch just one?

      If anyone is losing I would expect it’s Democrats for refusing to go on FOX, which to me just seems infantile.

      While I don’t own TV and really don’t enjoy it so don’t seek it out, I’m exposed to it, and certainly have seen no shortage of Republicans on CNN and MSNBC. Additionally, I’ve noted considerable duplication between all networks on stories, with exception of plugging for candidates in which FOX seems to lean GOP and all the rest favor Democrats. Leaving the only notable difference involving harmful stories, FOX covers them regardless of party, the rest will often cover them only if they are GOP. Apparently the Democrats in the 50% of FOX viewers must watch so they won’t miss those stories.

  24. The more Reason writes about it, the more it becomes obvious that Fox News is NOT a news organization. It is an entertainment business with political commentary. It’s really not that different from Jay Leno, i.e., the commentary is predictable and the humor isn’t funny. And so when Obama says he goes on Fox not to be on a news organization but to “debate the opposition”, that is wholly accurate. And if he were so “aghast” at the proposition, he wouldn’t do the appearance.

    I mean, how disingenuous can you get when you claim that Fox News reported the ACORN pimp scandal? Last I heard, it was some young dude with a fur shawl that uncovered that story. Fox did what it always does: repeats somebody else’s story.

    There’s nothing wrong with being purely an op-ed TV station. So why all the pretending?

    1. Have you noticed how many news articles in your local newspaper are merely reprints from the AP or Reuters?

      Does that make them not news organizations?

        1. Yes, really. Check the bylines. Just about anything from international news is likely to be an AP or Reuters reprint. Not many local newspapers have Overseas Bureaus these days.
          it’s probably down to just the NYTimes and the Washington Post.

          In some places, they probably only do local reporting themselves, and reprint anything national.

          1. Way to focus on AP and not Fox. Way to go!!!

            1. What color is the sky in your world, Lamar? Fox News runs news all day long. After 5 P.M. they run commentary and opinion shows, just like the other cable news networks.

            2. You were attempting to claim that because FOX repeats stories broken by someone else that makes them ‘not a news organization”.

              I pointed out that just about every news organization repeats stories broken by others. Sometimes they literally reprint them word-for-word.

          2. Hazel wins.

            Lamar, you were actually unaware virtually every news outlet in existence routine involves using numerous outside sources for it’s news stories?

            Have you been reading/watching news long?

      1. Oh my. Yes, Fox News is a new organization dedicated to advancing conservative politics. It has never scooped anybody on a story, and its syndicated columnists are all Op-Ed writers, not beat reporters. I mean, really????

        1. Fox did what it always does: repeats somebody else’s story.

          Since when are news organizations supposed to make the news? To FOX’s credit, they manufacture (i.e. invent) fewer “news” stories than the other networks, most notably MSNBC, who spend way too much of their time talking about FOX.

    2. The more Reason writes about it, the more it becomes obvious that Fox News is NOT a news organization. It is an entertainment business with political commentary.

      This is different from CBS News ABC News, etc .. how?

      It’s not as if Fox ever deliberately ran a story based on fake documants, ala Sixty Minutes, in an effort to take down a President it dislikes.

      1. A couple of times Fox has put a D in front of a republican behaving badly. And that wasn’t based on fake documents, they made that up themselves.

        Fox even argued in court that it has no responsibility to tell the truth in it’s news stories.

      2. Except the documents weren’t actually proven forgeries, and even if they had been nobody disputed the information contained in them.

        That was a highly successful attempt to assassinate the character of Dan Rather and make the story about the alleged forgery rather than Bush’s going AWOL. They are good at this stuff. You apparently still buy it after all these years.

        1. Even Fake Tony wouldn’t say something that silly. You’re Fake-Fake Tony.

        2. Except In fact the documents weren’t actually proven complete and utter forgeries, and even if they had been nobody everybody who wasn’t a Bush-hating retard disputed the information contained in them because they knew it was an MS Word fabrication based on the far left’s wettest of wet dreams and there was absolutely nothing truthful about it at all.

          That was a highly successful thoroughly pathetic attempt to assassinate the character of Dan Rather George W. Bush and make the story about the alleged forgery dereliction of duty rather than Bush’s going AWOL Dan Rather’s being a bumbling fool in the tank for Kerry who never vetted his sources properly if they told him what he and the other leftards wanted to hear. They are Tony is good at this stuff either incredibly gullible or else a troll who thinks we might be. You Tony apparently still buys it Dan Rather’s pathetic, failed attempt to defend his thoroughly fraudulent document after all these years of being shown the incontrovertible evidence that those documents are crap, as are the left’s fantasies about what was in fact Bush’s honorable tour of duty in the National Guard.

      3. Liberals think Oreily is news. Liberals thing Mad Money on CNBC is also news.

        Liberals have no concept of what news actually is. They ‘redefine’ news by reading only the opinion section of the newspaper.

  25. If the Daily Show is a news organization, then so is Fox News. Fair enough.

    1. I had a few days off last week. I had Fox News on in the background. During the day, they are clearly a news show. At night, they are commentary (Just like MSNBC’s Maddow, Olberman, Matthews and Schultz). Given that, to assert that MSNBC is a news organization while Fox isn’t is flat-out unsupportable.

      1. You might even say it’s a lie, Grandpa.

    2. If the Daily Show CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, or any other known 0bama propagandist is a news organization, then so is Fox News. Fair enough.

  26. The administration is controlling the message. They would rather have the media talk about a feud with Fox than talk about real issues. The reward far outweighs the risk. The “Fox ain’t News” sideshow took up most of the news cycle while they gave Pakistan $7.5B and then the Pakis just happened to start an offensive against the Taliban.

    1. Precisely. Now you’re getting it.

  27. There’s not enough news for a 24 hour news channel. So they need filler, and that comes in the form of entertaining Op-Ed.

    Of course Fox is biased, the others are too. It’s their claim of fair and balanced that makes them fair game for attack.

    But I like joking that Fox is fair and balanced because one Judge Naplitano is worth a thousand O’Reillys.

  28. FOX is dangerous, IMO. I watched my father go from a moderate libertarian/liberal to a Glenn Beck ape in a matter of weeks when he was laid up at a friend’s house after surgery and got addicted to FOX. All of a sudden, after 8 years of hating on Bush, all the problems in the world could be attributed to “that nigger in the white house.”

    There is a point at which a slanted news outlet becomes party propaganda. I’m not even talking about the blowholes in the evening. They put up RNC talking points up as news factoids. It’s no secret how closely tied they are to the GOP machine.

    All the smart, critical consumers of news here are immune, of course, but I really think FOX has a negative effect on less discerning people. Part of their whole “fair and balanced” shtick is to accuse practically every other source of information in the world, from all the rest of journalism and academia and entertainment, as part of the giant liberal conspiracy. So FOX viewers don’t go outside of their little wingnut sphere for information.

    I don’t think anything can be done about it, but it is slightly creepy, and Obama’s strategy seems to be to tie FOX in with the GOP and make moderates (some 80% of whom disapprove of the GOP already) not want to even get close to it. FOX’s ratings may soar as a result of the administration’s attacks, but their target isn’t FOX, it’s the GOP.

    1. So you take after your old man, eh, Tony?

      Utterly incapable of having any ideas of your own.

    2. In my years of perusing the internet I’ve seen plenty of people construct straw men, but this is the first time I’ve seen a Straw Dad. Congratulations.

    3. So because your dad is easily swayed and influenced by the magic talking plastic box, that makes Fox “dangerous”?

    4. Yes, like Republicans invented the idea of “party propaganda”.

      Most of what you think you know about “history” is likely some shit cooked up by a bunch of Marxists who were trying to undermine the capitalist system. Especially anything related to the Cold War. If you want to read propaganda, look up Noam Chomsky.

      1. Part of their whole “fair and balanced” shtick is to accuse practically every other source of information in the world, from all the rest of journalism and academia and entertainment, as part of the giant liberal conspiracy.

        Sort of like how in “Manufacturing Consent”, the “corporate media” is all part of a giant conspiracy to enslave everyone to the capitalist system.

    5. The existence of retarded fetuses like you is dangerous.

    6. Tony, you made that up about your father. I don’t believe it for a second. I am a conservative who thinks that obama is a nightmare for the US and the entire western world and anyone who is really interested in liberalism (not socialism/communism) I don’t know anyone who talks like that. You don’t either. Unless it is a liberal talking about a black conservative.

  29. Fox makes a clear distinction between news and commentary. Their news coverage seems quite thorough. CNN, MSNBC, broadcast nets include snarky editorializing in much of their putative news coverage.

    I watch a variety of news broadcasts and read a wide variety of newspapers and web sites. I’m capable of making up my own mind, thank you very much, and enjoy different POVs.

    Rather imagine that Fox’s viewership has gone up because of OHB’s putting a bulls eye on them. Folx get curious.

    I often find commentary on Fox irritating — not because of what’s discussed, rather because of the opinionators’ style. Bombast is unappealing.

    What does concern me is POTUS and staff urging other news outlets to ‘not be like Fox.’ Why? Do they mean to eschew investigative reporting?

    1. CNN, MSNBC, broadcast nets include snarky editorializing in much of their putative news coverage.

      Indeed, they do it all day long. Ostensibly “neutral” hosts such as Tamron Hall, Norah O’Donnell and David Shuster are every bit as biased as their better-known prime time colleagues.

  30. Uncovering the radical ramblings of Van Jones?a man tasked with creating “green” jobs even though he never had created a job for anyone but himself

    Demonstratably false. In writing a best-selling book, he clearly created jobs for editors, booksellers, etc.

    Just apologize now, David…and quit letting hyperbole get in the way of your thinking.

    1. Since when is trafficking in dead trees a green job you fuckwad?

  31. You guys just don’t get it. “Bias” isn’t black or white, yes or no. There is a mile of difference between an organization (or individual) who goes to great lengths to understand potential sources of bias and either eliminate or mitigate them, and an organization that is willing not only to let its biases run wild, but also willing to use deceptive arguments that they darned well know are incomplete and misleading in order to further their aims.

    FOX is 10/90 biased. CNN is 55/45 the other way. This isn’t “fair and balanced”.

    (Btw, FOX wasn’t this bad as recently as five years ago…but it has clearly decided to fly off the deep end now).

    1. What makes you think CNN goes to great lengths to eliminate bias, and FOX doesn’t?

      I’d submit that virtually everyone in the journalism profession went there because they WANTED to influence people’s opinions. Objectivity is a lie they tell to make you more susceptible to that influence.

    2. But that logic, if I hit run you over with my car and go to jail, I’m a job creator:

      construction workers to build prison .. check
      prison guards .. check
      prison nurse (prison hurts) .. check

      Dumb Ass

  32. I don’t have a problem with Fox doing their own thing, but in the same way that we should laugh at the idea that the white house calling out Fox News will change anything (like people who watch Fox News are going to listen to the Obama administration about anything), this article is equally un-worthwhile in it’s commentary.

    Someone get Fox News a martyr-ita. As I’ve already aptly pointed out, they also try to silence their enemies. Yet we choose to pick them out and defend them. Could it be that David has a little bias of his own? God I hate signing onto reason and reading his mind-numbing paleo-conservative ex-republican crap. More Peter Bagge, more kickass Reason interviews, less predicable David Harsanyi commentary.

  33. Forget Fox news, David Harsanyi should answer the following questions. Does the Israeli government?which supposedly represents the entire country?have the right to make indigenous Arab citizens second-class but confer automatic citizenship on any Jew from Brooklyn? Can a right-wing Zionist fanatic be a libertarian?

    1. Ahmed, Arabs are as “indigenous” to the Levant as Whites are to South Africa and “a right-wing Zionist fanatic” is miles closer to a Libertarian than anyone who supports the Baathist thugocracy of Fatah or the Ayatollah-ist theocracy of Hamas.

      Figuratively and literally, pull your head out of the sand…

      1. Dude, Joe, are you serious about Arabs in the Levant? You realize you’re talking about an area that stretches from Eastern Egypt to the Fertile Crescent, and from Southern Turkey to Northern Arabia, right? I mean, political leanings aside, the Arabs are clearly from the Levant. Just sayin’.

        1. Tell that to the Kurds, the Aramean/Chaldean Christians and the Mizrachi Jews who still inhabit the Levant. Their presence there predates the rise of Islam and the subsequent spread of Arab religion, rule and populations by millenia.

          While correct that “Arabs are clearly from the Levant”, we can also say that “Whites are clearly from South Africa”. Does this make Whites “indigenous” to South Africa? Didn’t think so.

          If Arabs have a right to complain about 60 years of occupation, don’t the truly indigenous ethnic groups in the Levant have an even greater right to complain about 1300+ years of occupation?

        2. Also, Arabs are from Arabia. The only part of the Levant that overlaps with Arabia is Eastern Jordan.

          If you’re going to argue that Canaanites and Nabateans were really Arabs, you may as well argue that Jews are really Arabs too, because Jews are the only remaining Canaanitic ethnic group still in existence. If we’re going to continue with this twisted logic, this means that Zionism is merely a type of Arab Nationalism because Jews are Arabs.

          1. Well, we’re not “indigenous” to North America, so why don’t we go the fuck back to Europe and give this land back to the couple million or so Native Americans that are still around?

            My point was that the Arabs have lived in the general area of “the Levant” long enough to say that they’re “indigenous.” I didn’t realize your definition of indigenous meant they had to live there for at least a few millenia to qualify.

            And, by the way, both Jews and Arabs are Semitic peoples, and yes, they’re both “indigenous” to that area. The fact that they’re so closely related probably explains why they hate each other so goddamn much.

    2. And by “figuratively” he means pull your head out of that brown sand; as in the sand that regularly pours forth from a certain orifice of yours into which the sun never shines.

  34. Chad, you are a moron. Do you truly believe Van Jones is a job creator because someone at a publishing house had to do their job while publishing his book? Were these new jobs? Are they permanent? How many of the 3 people in Van Jones “job creation” project are still employed there?

    And, your opinion on whether Fox is more biased than MSNBC, NBC or others is purely that–opinion. (Unless, I missed your footnotes citing the studies pointing out clear cases of bias on the parts of those networks.)

    Tony, you are just a plain puke. “Dangerous”? Really? I keep seeing people describe constitutionally protected speech lately as “dangerous”. I just bet you’d like any excuse to shut up any opposition to your limited worldview. I almost hope the WH is successful in shutting down Fox news–then, maybe people would start to wake up and realize that all speech deserves protection, particularly when the speech is coming from a minority viewpoint. Anyway, FO and have a bad day.

    1. Yes, dangerous. There are plenty of historical examples of right-wing agitprop used in the service of horrible things.

      FOX news is the very definition of propaganda. It serves the interest of a political party. It is not news. It just pretends to be. If speech means anything at all–if it can turn to action–then yes, some speech is dangerous. I’m not advocating censorship. I’m just calling right-wing agitprop what it is.

  35. And Ahmed, you can FO too. Apparently, anyone who doesn’t support the PLO is a rightwing Zionist fanatio in your little monkey brain. Just like the WH and Fox news, maybe you and your pals will wipe Israel off the map one day. Then, we can all laugh at the cesspool, third world hellhole you create, once the people with any brains have left. I’m sure you’ll have all your women bundled up in black bags and masks soon and then you and your buddies will be left having sausage fests and sword fights in back alleyways.

    1. Who said anything about the PLO, you moron? There’s a lot of room between ‘wiping Israel off the map” and getting Israel to end the occupation and repsect the rights of all its citizens. But time and demographics are not on Israel’s side.

      1. Burn in Hell, you Jew-hating Islamonazi. I hope Israel ends your Ethnic Jordanian Islamonazi squatter occupation of what is rightfully its land with flame-throwers while turning Jordan, Iran, Syria, and all the rest of your Islamonazi countries into irradiated glass. I hope they burn you alive too, and any of the UN’s flacks who happen to be serving as you terrorists’ willing human shields. You Israel haters are a cruel blight on all the world, and it’s high time the Jews sent all you racist goat rapists to burn with your political forefather Hitler and your Satanic moon god Allah. Allahu Anbar, goat rapist!

        1. Wow, quite a masterstroke to compare a group to the Nazis and then recommend a Final Solution for them in the same paragraph. You are a gentleman and a scholar, sir.

      2. Unfortunately for you, habibi, most Palestinian Arabs consider Tel Aviv to be just as much ‘Occupied Palestine’ as Ramallah. For the majority of Palestinians, ‘ending the occupation’ is synonymous with asking Israel to commit suicide.

        And let’s say that Israel did ‘end the occupation’, whom exactly would they return the land to? Jordan? They renounced their claims to the West Bank in 1988. Egypt? They renounced their claims to Gaza in 1979 as part of the Camp David accords. Palestine? The last independent governments West of the Jordan prior to the establishment of the State of Israel were the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem and Hasmonean Judea! An independent Palestinian state has never existed just like ethnically distinct Syrian, Lebanese, Palestinian and Jordanian peoples have never existed.

        Palestine, like Syria, Jordan and Lebanon, is the construct of the British, French, and Arab empirialism, colonialism and occupation. If the ‘Palestinians’ are truly seeking to throw off the shackles of ‘occidentalism’ and ‘occupation’, why do they doggedly cling to the occidentalist and occupationist constructs of yesteryear?

  36. Herb Goldman|10.21.09 @ 6:35PM|#
    Chad, you are a moron. Do you truly believe Van Jones is a job creator because someone at a publishing house had to do their job while publishing his book? Were these new jobs? Are they permanent? How many of the 3 people in Van Jones “job creation” project are still employed there?

    If creating a product consumed by hundreds of thousands of people at $25 a pop isn’t “creating jobs”, what is? Also, there is nothing such as a “permanent job”. When jobs are “created”, it is almost always in the form of many fractional jobs that add up, in conjunction with other fractional job creators, to a whole job.

    Here is a spiffy question for you: Please tell me how to spend money and NOT create jobs. Good luck.

    As another fun question: Did my purchase of Van’s book create his job? Did it create all the people between him and I in the supply chain? Or did he create the jobs? Or is responsibility shared between him, myself, and everyone in between?

    And, your opinion on whether Fox is more biased than MSNBC, NBC or others is purely that–opinion. (Unless, I missed your footnotes citing the studies pointing out clear cases of bias on the parts of those networks.)

    Just as I missed all the footnotes citing that FOX is no more biased than anyone else, which is the conventional wisdom around here. I am simply stating something that is self-evident to anyone but a libertarian: bias isn’t binary, and some people are less binary than others.

    1. If creating a product consumed by hundreds of thousands of people at $25 a pop isn’t “creating jobs”, what is?

      Consumption is now a “job”? I’ve been out of work for a while but I’ve kept on “consuming” things. Does that mean I’m actually employed?

      1. Your new job is to figure out how that book magically became available for you to consume.

        1. What, you never heard of the #bookz channel?

        2. If making shit for people to mass reproduce and sell counts as ‘creating jobs’, then handing money out to people selling shit also counts as ‘creating jobs’.

          This means that the government’s taking people’s hard-earned money away via taxes and squandering it decreases the purchase power of the American people which actually cuts jobs.

          Isn’t it funny how following Statist logic through to its inevitable consequences leads one toward Libertarian solutions?

    2. “Please tell me how to spend money and NOT create jobs. Good luck. ”

      The money has to come from somewhere, that’s why. The money was ALREADY in the economy, and would have been used to create jobs. Yes if a small town receives a load of money from outside, then jobs are created in that town. But where did that money come from? It came from someone in another town, who now lost jobs.

      Secondly, you are taking more money out of the economy than putting in it (unless you think the government has 100% efficiency, there is a loss).

  37. Obama’s not a President; he’s nothing but a little bitch.

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  39. I think that all this defense or rebuke of the merits of this or that cable news network is a little absurd. I watch all of ’em and they all have byas. I think fox has a degree more because it is the only one on the right, so it doesn’t have to please moderates in order to keep ratings up.
    I always seem to appreciate the one which is attacking the current administration, not because I hate America, but simply because they work harder. I liked msnbc and hated fox when bush was in office. They were just selling rationalizations. Right now Fox is doing a fantastic job of finding videos of people in the W.H. explicitly admitting to collectivist agendas that should, implicitly, be kept secret. These things are good to know about the people who want my vote.

    Tony, I think you are lying, but if you are not, I’m sorry for my callousness. If your dad hates “Niggers”, it’s because HE is a biggot. HE is. If Glen Beck can make him hate an entire class of people after knowing better for half his life, he proabaly always hated that class of people. No twinkie defense shit for brains.

    1. They all have byas?

  40. Of course Fox News isn’t a real news organization. Very little of anything on TV qualifies as real news. It’s almost all infotainment.

  41. I barely got to the end of the first paragraph before I realized I didn’t give a f for this fake feud.

  42. I have never been so scared of my own government as I am now. Before I was just pissed off that Obama screwed first Honduras and then Poland, his speech before the UN on Oct 1 saying we should restrict speech that is “insulting to religion” was scary enough, but I thought he wouldn’t be able to do anything about it.
    But now trying to stifle a news organization because he doesn’t like it? Who the fuck do these people think they are? This is fucking nuts. I don’t think Obama believes in the first amendement at all, we already know he doesn’t believe in the 2nd. And his lobbying to expand the Patriot act and refuse to give up power that he critized Bush for using it is pretty clear he doesn’t believe in any of the amendments.

    1. Yeah. I am sure Obama hates the 13th Amendment…

  43. Just an observation…
    Bill O’Reilly is fairer and more balanced than virtually any show on MSNBC. Can anyone name a fair and balanced show on MSNBC?

    1. All of its news reporting. Or is Mrs. Alan Greenspan too much of a lefty for you?

  44. Andrea’s fantastic. What’s your point? She’s not interested in lying. That’s good.

  45. Why isn’t CNN understood to be just as slanted as FOX or MSN?

  46. I have no problem with Fox News being Conservative. I do have a problem, however, with all the bible thumpers on Fox calling themselves “Libertarians” and throwing that word out. I hate the fact that Libertarians like Greg Gutfeld has to cowtow to Neocons by saying he believes Glenn Beck is a Libertarian and NOT a Neocon hack.

    Watch this vid for details…

  47. i’m not shocked
    the network belongs to the owner
    the owner puts in the air what he wants
    the viewer should get smart
    and watch the other networks too

  48. My only point is that if you take the Bible straight, as I’m sure many of Reasons readers do, you will see a lot of the Old Testament stuff as absolutely insane. Even some cursory knowledge of Hebrew and doing some mathematics and logic will tell you that you really won’t get the full deal by just doing regular skill english reading for those books. In other words, there’s more to the books of the Bible than most will ever grasp.

  49. My only point is that if you take the Bible straight, as I’m sure many of Reasons readers do, you will see a lot of the Old Testament stuff as absolutely insane. Even some cursory knowledge of Hebrew and doing some mathematics and logic will tell you that you really won’t get the full deal by just doing regular skill english reading for those books. In other words, there’s more to the books of the Bible than most will ever grasp. I’m not concerned that Mr. Crumb will go to hell or anything crazy like that! It’s just that he, like many types of religionists, seems to take it literally, take it straight…the Bible’s books were not written by straight laced divinity students in 3 piece suits who white wash religious beliefs as if God made them with clothes on…the Bible’s books were written by people with very different mindsets

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