The problem with Fox News

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The problem with Fox News

Post by NextJen on Tue 11 Aug 2009, 9:09 pm

I have a huge problem with Fox News, and you're here now, so how about reading it. PLEASE, if you disagree with me, make your voice heard.


Now, I will fully admit that I am writing this as someone with left-wing ideologies and a tendency toward political activism. But I should state for the record, that I used to be a Republican and was an activist with that party until the mid 90's when I became an independent, and, after spending a lot of time hearing out both sides, I finally realized that I believed more strongly in the liberal agenda. I found the arguments toward that way of thinking to be better developed and things just made more sense to me. So yes, I'm a lefty, but I used to be a righty, and I don't mind hearing both sides of an argument -- in fact, I welcome it.


Ok, so onto Fox News. I am a political junkie. If my TV is on, it's almost always tuned to something political. I try to watch points of view from all sides, but i have to be honest with you, Fox News is so painful to me that I can only handle about 1/2 hour of it within any given 24 hour period. So, to wit, my problems with it:

* They propogate outright lies through innuendo. (ie. "Will Obama's healthcare plan lead to the government killing your grandmother? This protester certainly believes so!" without ever answering the question with the truth, which, of course, is 'no').
* They are fear-mongers. They state everything as though the world is about to come to an end and dammit, it's Obama's fault!
* They RARELY provide an alternate point of view, and, on the rare instances that they do, they talk over the person and shout at them and make it so that the alternate view is never able to be presented.
* They still call their reporting "fair and balanced." (what a joke)
* They are dangerous -- inciting fear, anger and hatred against a perceived enemy is just dangerous. Particularly so when the fear, anger and hate is based on complete misinformation.

So, you ask, what about MSNBC -- the "Fox News" of the Liberal World. Well, to that I answer this. Yes, MSNBC has a strong liberal tilt, HOWEVER, they also present opposing views and give those that wish to speak them ample opportunity to do so. One of the most active guests on Rachel Maddow's show is Pat Buchanan and they have very civil discussions. "Morning Joe" with Joe Scarborough presents a lot of conservative arguments. And even more than that, any of the commentators on MSNBC will criticize Democrats when necessary, but Fox does not do that to Republicans unless they are pretty much out on their asses (like Mark Sanford).

But anyway, the best shows for political commentary remain Meet the Press and Charlie Rose. I just with that Fox News viewers would change the channel once in a while to learn that liberals are not "the enemy" and that we love our country as much as they seem to think they do.
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NextJen
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Re: The problem with Fox News

Post by NextJen on Fri 14 Aug 2009, 10:12 pm

http://www.mediaite.com/online/the-real-health-care-debate-the-obama-administration-vs-fox-news/

The REAL Health Care Debate: The Obama Administration Vs Fox News
by Colby Hall | 11:02 am, August 14th, 2009

Watching a few hours of Fox News these days amounts to a non-stop infomercial opposing the Obama Administration’s effort to reform Health Care. While there is always room for a healthy debate on the issues, please don’t look to Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity or Glenn Beck for a measured discourse - they rarely, if ever, present a constructive solution to the current health care problems (though there is the occasional admission that there is need for reform.) No single entity seems more entrenched in the opposition to the health care reform than Fox News.

The political bias of cable news is a time-worn tale, particularly with Fox News. But it seems like that narrative has made us so numb to blatant subjectivity that we can no longer see clear bias when its right in front of our faces. Does no one care anymore? Or maybe it’s just August and everyone’s on vacation? Simply put — the amount of propaganda put forth from Fox News is far from fair and balanced — they are very near inciting riots.

Not so? If you watch Glenn Beck or listen to his radio show, you hear a lot of phrases like “waking the sleeping giant” and “we don’t want this country to become Russia.” Cut to the language of protesters confronting their elected officials in the town halls of the past week and one hears the same exact phrases spoken through held back tears and barely restrained emotion.

During Wednesday’s “Talking Points Memo,” O’Reilly made the rather bold claim that the Obama administration is specifically targeting Fox News. How did he make the deduction? Because White House spokesman Robert Gibbs recently said “Well, I think we all have something to lose, Matt, if we let cable television come to town hall meetings and kill health care reform for another year and put the special interests back in charge.”

Fox News – particularly O’Reilly – have always been quite savvy at “punching up” – that is, targeting entities that are well above their accepted station (i.e. their current debate with GE). Does claiming to be engaged in a “fight” with the White House serve their purpose? In terms of pleasing their audience it does — just hear the rabble rousers yell to their democratically elected representatives that they want their country back. From a publicity standpoint it’s a genius move – evil genius maybe.

There is legitimate criticism that the Obama White House has not been able to articulate their new health care agenda in a simple and understandable way. The truth is that it’s currently a very complicated issue. But isn’t that part of the problem — that unnecessarily complex solutions create a multitude of loopholes that allow big corporations to turn a healthy profit? Is that how a free market is supposed to work? Is that the American way, or is it the problem?

The problem is not just with Fox News, nor with cable news in general. We are truly in a nation divided by media consumption, exacerbated by the rise of opinion journalism (at the cost of capital J – journalism). As Kurt Andersen has said, American’s now only consume media the reaffirms their pre-existing opinions. The vacuum of differing views has been profitable for a number of media outlets, but what cost victory?
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