Phoenix Sinking

The latest hit piece about Fox News recycles old lies and invents new ones.

One Dan Kennedy, of the Boston Phoenix (yes, that behemoth of journalism) has written the latest diatribe against the evils of Fox News. He's only into paragraph two when the distortions start flowing from his cyber-pen:
Folbaum then turned to his two guests. First up was Newsweek’s Eleanor Clift, a liberal, who allowed, "I think it was a powerful ad," but pointed out that it sought to ignore the entire history of the Vietnam War and the widespread opposition it engendered. But syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer, an archconservative, was having none of it. He said that Kerry had "betrayed the comrades he left behind," and added that the senator should be asked, "Have you no shame?" Folbaum joined in, sneering of Kerry, "Is he going to have to go on The Daily Show and talk to Jon Stewart about it?"

Apparently Mr Kennedy is not a good listener, or else he deliberately misreports the exchange to make it sound the way he wants it to sound. He mangles the chronology of the discussion completely, then he takes Folbaum's question, puts it in the wrong order, and rewrites it (I thought real journalists only used quotation marks around verbatim quotes--oh wait, this is the Boston Phoenix):

FOLBAUM: Eleanor, what does John Kerry need to do? If these ads are going to continue to run, does he have to do more than go on the Daily Show and talk to Jon Stewart about it?
CLIFT: Well, I think these ads have taken a toll. But a greater toll has been the fact that Sen Kerry has been so, almost passive in responding. I mean, he should stand up and say, look, I served in VietNam, I have medals. Have you no shame? I mean the people that are bringing these charges....
FOLBAUM: Let me give Charles the last word because we only have a couple of seconds.
KRAUTHAMMER: The question is "have you no shame"? People ought to ask Sen Kerry have you no shame, to pretend to be a hero of the veterans...

Oh, so Krauthammer was responding to Eleanor Clift's invocation of "have you no shame" odd that Mr Kennedy overlooked that little point. Kennedy continues to spin: paired a reasonable liberal against both a hard-right ideologue and a far-from-neutral anchor.

Eleanor Clift (who screamed at John McLaughlin "There is no blue stained dress!") is "reasonable", but Krauthammer (who was a speechwriter for Walter Mondale) is an "ideologue". And the anchor is "far-from-neutral"--based on what he actually said or the phony quote Mr Kennedy provided? Maybe it's because Kennedy insists Folbaum was "sneering". Look at the image of Mr Folbaum at the exact moment when this question was being asked. Find the "sneer":

But Mr Kennedy isn't done yet:
The bombastic Sean Hannity likes to sign off by counting down the days to George W. Bush’s fervently hoped-for re-election...

No, Hannity doesn't "sign off" with the countdown. The countdown is used to intro a segment after a commercial break. And why, Mr Kennedy, do you not mention that Alan Colmes alternates with Hannity by doing a countdown to the election of John Kerry? Fair and balanced, eh?
...a practice documented to hilarious effect in the recently released film Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch’s War on Journalism.

So now it's clear where Mr Kennedy is getting his "facts" from! He obviously doesn't watch Fox himself because if he did, he would have known about Alan Colmes's countdown as well, and wouldn't have called it a "sign off". But wait, there's more:
O’Reilly ate it up when right-wing pundette Michelle Malkin criticized Tuesday’s "compassion" theme. ("It sort of really grates on my nerves, this compassion day, this metrosexual-makeover day," Malkin told her delighted host.)

Now Mr Kennedy wouldn't fib, would he?

O'REILLY: But if you don't have that, a lot of people are going to go, I'm not going to vote for those mean old Republicans, they don't have any sensitivity.
O'REILLY: We're going to give you health insurance, we're going to give you drug subsidies, and it seems that President Bush is almost forced to run parallel to that, or he'll lose the election.
O'REILLY: But how can a party that has embraced "the swift boats", which was, whether you agree with that or not, it was brutal, brutal. How can they say they're compassionate?
By sometimes appearing to be to the right of the president, as he did in his interviews with Malkin and Laura Bush, he helped Bush appear to be more moderate.

Huh? Those questions were to the right of the President? Maybe on Bizarro Planet.
Fully 45 percent of Fox viewers believed that the US had found ties between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda

Fully 100% of the 9/11 commission found the same:

It was Iraq that reportedly took the ini tiative. In March 1998, after Bin Ladin’s public fatwa against the United States, two al Qaeda members reportedly went to Iraq to meet with Iraqi intelligence. In July, an Iraqi delegation traveled to Afghanistan to meet first with the Taliban and then with Bin Ladin. Sources reported that one, or perhaps both, of these meetings was apparently arranged through Bin Ladin’s Egyptian deputy, Zawahiri, who had ties of his own to the Iraqis....Similar meetings between Iraqi officials and Bin Ladin or his aides may have occurred in 1999 during a period of some reported strains with the Taliban. According to the reporting, Iraqi officials offered Bin Ladin a safe haven in Iraq. Bin Ladin declined, apparently judging that his circumstances in Afghanistan remained more favorable than the Iraqi alternative. The reports describe friendly contacts and indicate some common themes in both sides’ hatred of the United States. But to date we have seen no evidence that these or the earlier contacts ever developed into a collaborative operational relationship.

Them be "ties".

Mr Kennedy rewrites quotes to fit his agenda, mischaracterizes and lies about what was aired, and then cites Robert "Xanadu" Greenwald's little video as a research source. Not to channel John McCain, but doesn't that make Mr Kennedy a disingenuous "journalist"?

posted: Thu - September 2, 2004 at 12:48 PM       j$p  send