Beware the Dog


Warning: reading the brilliant news analysis by the Einsteins who brought you Outfoxed may be hazardous to your intellectual health. But we have the antidote. Updated!

The gals who call themselves newshounds (another fine product from the Outfoxed syndicate) regularly post ridiculous articles, full of mistakes, distortions, and even the occasional outright lie. But was there a full moon tonight? Something has to account for the explosion of nuttiness from the doggies in recent hours.

Newshound "eleanor" has a favorite claim about Fox's political coverage, but she prefaces it with an old trick (and you know about dogs and new tricks):
Molly Henneberg stated that Clinton gave no-bid contracts to Halliburton to rebuild Kosovo.

When the newspoodles say a reported "stated" something, that's to make you think they were just throwing in facts to promote an agenda. But maybe, just maybe, the reporter was, well, reporting:

HENNEBERG: The Bush campaign responded that the Clinton Administration also awarded no-bid contracts to Halliburton, to help rebuild Kosovo.

Hmm, taking a sentence where the correspondent is reporting someone else's words, and then attributing those sentiments to the correspondent...that sounds like a familiar tactic. I'll bet Howard Kurtz would remember it from his review of Outfoxed:

In a montage involving criticism of Kerry's tax policies, political correspondent Carl Cameron is shown saying: "If you want to destroy jobs in this country, you raise taxes." Left on the cutting-room floor is that Cameron was quoting Commerce Secretary Don Evans. During the debate over former counterterrorism chief Richard Clarke, a Fox anchor is seen in the movie calling his book "an appalling act of profiteering" -- but he was quoting Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist.

But back to eleanor's penetrating critique of Fox political coverage:
(Again Fox attempts to erase Kerry's political points when reporting on his campaign; while providing no reciprocal political response to the Bush campaign points.)...The campaign coverage is typical: Bush's campaign is covered with no opposing view. The Kerry campaign points are made, with the Bush view added at the end...

But in the very hour that eleanor was writing about, Mike Emanuel included the following as part of his report on Bush:

EMANUEL: Recent polls suggest Senator Kerry with a slight lead over President Bush with women voters...John Kerry claims there will be a planned large call-up of national guard troops after the election...John Kerry's campaign is very critical of this latest spot...

Sorry eleanor. You're busted.

Our favorite newspoodle, "deborah", did her usual mangling of facts and quotations in a report on Hannity and Colmes:
Hannity then commented that there was a petition connected to Bill Burket [sic] on Democrats.com and he asked Rezendez if he knew anything about it.

HANNITY: I still have not been able to corroborate this, and I want to know if you have heard anything about this. I was sent an article that apparently Mr Burkett had posted on a website, democrats.com, a few days before Dan Rather broke the forged documents story, and the headline was Study Proves Bush Was Legally AWOL. Do you know anything about that? Have you looked into that, will you look into that?
There was no mistaking Hannity's intention in mentioning this point. Earlier in the show, some mention was made that the person who leaked the memos was a Democrat...Hannity made sure there was also a link made to the Democrats....I.'ve been waiting for Hannity to make this charge. He has been hinting about Democrats being behind the forged memos all week.

But why would Hannity have to make a connection between Burkett and the Democrats when Burkett himself has done so? To wit:

MATTHEWS:  I got you, exactly what you mean, you were a yellow dog, very conservative Democrat.
BURKETT:  That‘s correct.

Meanwhile, newspup "melanie" is baying at the moon about Liz Trotta, who appeared on Dayside to discuss Rathergate:
The audience wasn't told that Trotta was fired by CBS in 1985...My point is that when anyone gets fired it's hurtful. Trotta could easily be resentful and angry, have a bone to pick with CBS, and thus be less than objective in what she says now.

But wait a minute, this is the website bought and paid for by the producers of Outfoxed--you know the little video that trotted out disgruntled former Fox employees like David Korb and Jon Du Pre without telling the viewer that they had been fired by Fox?
  • NH: I didn't produce Outfoxed. You'll have to ask Robert Greenwald who did.
  • J$: Really, Melanie, the producer of Outfoxed pays for this site, and you tell me I have to ask Mr Xanadu who the producer of Outfoxed is?!? I was born at night, but not last night. You'll have to do better than that. But at least you apparently agree with me that Outfoxed was wrong not to let its viewers know that people it was using in its video had been fired by Fox, because they would be "resentful and angry", "could have a bone to pick" and "could be less than objective". I applaud your intellectual honesty on that point.
  • NH: I can tell you, categorically J$, that Robert Greenwald does not pay for this site. Period. Have a nice evening.

No he doesn't; Robert "Xanadu" Greenwald directed Outfoxed. Jim Gilliam was the producer and foots the bills for the newspups website. We have to wonder why melanie worked so hard to avoid making any of that clear.

But our prize winner for inept and fatuous commentary has to go to "Marie-Therese", who takes off on one of Bill O'Reilly's "Talking Points" memos that quotes from the Wall Street Journal:
Bill O'Reilly tended to use the words "Wall Street Journal", which to most people means a printed newspaper, when, in fact, he actually meant the paperless online edition....The viewer is left with a confused impression, to whit [sic], that the Wall Street Journal - a paper made out of paper - had written an article...

Just how in the wide world of sports Marie-Therese could divine that Mr Bill was quoting an online article rather than one that appeared in the print edition of the paper is beyond our capacity to assess. We asked if she had checked the print edition before making that claim, but she did not respond. That just might be because the editorial in question did appear in the print edition (page A16). But wait, it gets even better:
He also tended to forget to qualify the paper's name with the word "editorial."

But just a few paragraphs up, this is Marie-Therese's own description of what O'Reilly said:

O’REILLY: “A lead editorial in ‘The Wall Street Journal" today says...“The editorial goes on to say...

O'Reilly quotes three sentences from the piece, reminds viewers twice that it an editorial; M-T writes that he did so, and then forgets about it just four paragraphs later! A true newshound classic.

Update: We haven't heard from newspup melanie about her segment of the above article, but another newspoodle, "ellen", has entered the lists in her defense to correct what appears to be a major, monumental factual error in our commentary:

We wrote above: Robert "Xanadu" Greenwald directed Outfoxed. Jim Gilliam was the producer and foots the bills for the newspups website. We have to wonder why melanie worked so hard to avoid making any of that clear.

Maybe you have to wonder but I don't. Your information is wrong, that's why. Had you bothered to check your own facts you would have known that Greenwald is the producer of Outfoxed. Gilliam is one of several co-producers.

Ellen is correct. Gilliam is not "the" producer of the video; he is "a" producer, i.e. a co-producer. Greenwald is listed as the producer, as ellen noted, but also as the director, as we noted.

Jim Gilliam does pay for the newshounds website but he does it on his own, independently of the movie and we receive no direct funds from him. And while we are on the topic, why don't you disclose your own financial relationship with Fox? I strongly suspect it would prove highly relevant to the subject at hand.

Wow. And she accuses us of not checking our facts!

For someone so devoted to scouting out the truth, down to a misplaced semi-colon, I am sure you will want to acknowledge your own mistake..

Of course we will. We always correct errors--after all, even the great Pulitzer-prize winning newspapers have to publish corrections. Of course, one could ask how many of the myriad mistakes on the newshounds site, documented right here, have the hounds acknowledged, let alone corrected?

...as well as disclose your own financial interests in this matter.

And what would those be what? We await your reply.

posted: Fri - September 17, 2004 at 08:33 PM       j$p  send 

Charles
Charles
Visit me on...
moderatemajority.com
 
johnny,
 
I understand Ellen at NewsHounds.us has found some innacuracies on your blog. She wrote:
 
I just went to his site and right off the bat I found a MISTAKE! He got the information wrong about the producers and how our site is financed. This from the man who seems to make it his life's work to monitor every moment of FNC to make sure not a word or semicolon is misquoted. Shocking, I know.
 
You might consider checking with ellen to see what you got wrong...
September 19, 2004, 6:21:33 PM EDT – Like – Reply


johnny dollar
Ellen already checked with me. Unlike ellen's site, which contains tons of factual errors/distortions/lies and rarely corrects any of them, we always post corrections when we get them, particularly when they are as monumental as the one pointed out by ellen.
 
By the way, she made yet another mistake in what she wrote you. We were exactly right about who finances her site. But since she was gracious enough to write us, we won't put up an article about her latest misquotation.
September 19, 2004, 6:29:23 PM EDT – Like – Reply


Charles
Johnny,
 
Didn't you also have to post a correction after conversing with ellen???
September 20, 2004, 5:13:10 PM EDT – Like – Reply


johnny dollar
One post has been removed because it was entirely off-topic.
September 20, 2004, 5:15:06 PM EDT – Like – Reply


johnny dollar
Charles, if you want to discuss corrections please read the article and you will see if a correction has been posted. Thank you so much.
September 20, 2004, 5:16:12 PM EDT – Like – Reply


ellen
By the way, Jim Gilliam said he'd pay for your site, too. 
 
Also, you wrote:
...as well as disclose your own financial interests in this matter.
 
And what would those be what? We await your reply.
 
I think I'm the one awaiting your reply. I was asking you a question, i.e. what are your own financial interests in Fox and/or the Newshounds website?
September 21, 2004, 4:55:51 AM EDT – Like – Reply


johnny dollar
Gilliam should pay for my site; we're driving a lot of business over to yours!
 
I must have misunderstood you: you said "disclose your own financial interests in this matter". I don't know what financial interests you claim that I have, which is why I'm waiting for you to explain. Thanks for commenting!
September 21, 2004, 11:04:11 AM EDT – Like – Reply


Charles
johnny wrote:
 
"We always correct errors.."
 
That is an outright lie.
 
You still haven't corrected that little GLARING error I notified you about on September 21, 2004.
October 2, 2004, 11:27:22 AM EDT – Like – Reply


johnny dollar
I'm sorry but you are mistaken. You did not identify to us Any error in our transcripts. Of course we'll correct an "error" if one exists. What is it?
 
By the way, several messages have been deleted because they were multiple-repetitive, off-topic where posted, and included personal attacks.
October 2, 2004, 2:45:35 PM EDT – Like – Reply


Charles
My comments pointing out your error were posted both here and at NewsHounds.us. You have evidently chosen to ignore them.
 
Repeated messages were evidently necessary to get your attention.
 
Shame on you for deleting the messages. Every one of them were on-topic, and were no more personal attacks than your usual snide comments about the NewsHounds...
 
At least have the decency to point out that you deleted the comment.
October 3, 2004, 8:15:56 PM EDT – Like – Reply


johnny dollar
When you see fit to point out the error let us know. The world is waiting!
October 3, 2004, 8:51:38 PM EDT – Like – Reply


Charles
johnny,
 
Like you did in a similar exchange at NewsHounds.us, I don't feel I should have to do your work for you. 
 
All I am willing to offer is that I notified you via the comments section on the transcript that contains the error.
 
And I note that you keep removing the link that shows you WERE repeatedly notified of the error. I guess you feel that you can cover your tracks if you just keep deleting that link...
October 4, 2004, 3:00:15 PM EDT – Like – Reply


johnny dollar
Notification received. Thank you. And I will continue to remove duplicate, triplicate, quadruplicate, whatevericate messages left in multiple threads.
October 4, 2004, 3:39:16 PM EDT – Like – Reply