1/6/09 12:37 PM

Latest Smear from Think Progress? Another Lie!

With J$P Video! Think Progress defames Fox News? Not exactly a bulletin; in fact, no more surprising than "pig eats truffles". TP's track record speaks for itself, and their methodology hasn't changed: use quote-cropping and cherry-picked snippets to distort and misrepresent FNC, just as they have done on topics ranging from Iran to Stephen Colbert.

Their latest bit of transparent trickery:

Fox News Host Refuses To Talk About Russia-Georgia War, Insists On Covering Edwards’ Affair
Yesterday, Russia launched a major military offensive against Georgia, which Georgia has called “a state of war.” Nearly two thousand people have died and the conflict risks sparking a wider war. Also yesterday, former senator John Edwards admitted to having an extramarital affair in 2006. Fox News has decided which story is worthy of more coverage.

Today, host Gregg Jarrett interviewed PBS’s Bonnie Erbe. “We have these huge stories going on like the one you’re reporting in Georgia,” Erbe noted when asked about Edwards. Jarrett, however, completely ignored Erbe’s comment on Georgia and continued to talk about Edwards... Throughout the segment, Jarrett refused to talk about anything except for Edwards’s affair... Of course, this is nothing new for Fox, which has a history of covering tabloid issues more than wars.
Naturally, the credulous Fox haters, free of any concern over accuracy by their refusal to watch, were happy to swallow the propaganda whole:
  • They can’t come down hard on Russia’s tampering in Georgia, when the Israeli/U.S. attack on Iran looms on the near horizon.
  • I never watch any [Fox] new’s [sic] and have been shutting off the local crap because they want to keep this going for ever [sic]…
  • And that is why I don’t watch the Fox Clown Network. The nimrod and Gumby University journalists don’t want to report “real issues.”
  • Wouldn’t we all have been more surprised if they had covered the war?
  • What else would one expect from the Tabloid News Network.
  • Get smart! Get informed! Turn Murdoch OFF!!!!
  • Rupert Murdoch detests the Georgian Government and is certainly delighted to see them take a pounding from the Russians.
Needless to say, outfits like Think Progress rely on the ignorance of the gullible, as displayed above, to sell their smears. Because not one of those lemmings had any idea what Gregg Jarrett and Julie Banderas broadcast in the 70 minutes that preceded the Bonnie Erbe segment. (Erbe, it should be noted, was employing a variation of an old tactic: hijacking an interview. Fox haters just love when they do this. Just ask Judy Bachrach. But we digress.)

Here is a timeline of the coverage that aired before the Erbe segment:
  • When the broadcast began at 4:00 pm Eastern, the first story mentioned was not the Edwards affair, but the Georgian war. Think Progress did not report this.
  • Minutes later, Steve Harrigan did a live report on the fighting from Tbilisi, Georgia. Think Progress did not report this.
  • In another segment, Jarrett and Banderas got analysis on the diplomatic implications from Amy Kellogg in Russia. Think Progress did not report this.
  • Later in the hour, another segment, with Douglas Paal of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, offered further perspectives on the implications of the war. Think Progress did not report this.
  • And then at 5:00 pm, another live report from Steven Harrigan from Tbilisi. Think Progress did not report this either.
Think Progress claims that Jarrett "refuses to talk about" the war: false. They say Fox deemed Edwards "worthy of more coverage" than the war: a blatant lie. In truth, during the very program Think Progress chose to focus on, no story got "more coverage" than the Georgian war did!

Why can't Think Progress tell the truth?

Why can't Think Porgress tell the truth?  
Most liklely the same reason the News Mutts and their puppies can't stop sniffing their butt's. They would have to leave the confine's of mommies basement and live in the real world, pay taxes, buy food, buy gas and pay bills. Thus the TRUTH hurt's so the choose the DemonNUTT version of the TRUTH where nothing matter's but what WE TELL YOU MATTER'S. Now STFU and HATE FOX and DANCE PUPPET'S when WE pull YOUR STRING'S.
August 10, 2008, 12:48:48 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Had a Think Progress moment there. The above post is by me.
August 10, 2008, 12:49:47 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike C.
I'll answer the rhetorical question at the end: They can't tell the truth because lying furthers their agenda.
August 10, 2008, 2:20:38 PM EDT – Like – Reply

So this is the new...latest...hot-off-the-press...fresh-from-the-oven...newly-minted... current-line-of-scrimmage:
The thing in Georgia is HUGE and all FNC will talk about is Edwards.... so therefore what we'll talk about is FNC talking about Edwards...
I had wondered yesterday what the complaint of the moment about FNC would be and there it was right in front of me.
August 10, 2008, 2:47:13 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Fox Fan
Whose strings are you pulling again, Scott?  
Thanks for posting yet another psychotic rant which careens off-topic with the insightful inclusions of juvenilia and name-calling.
August 10, 2008, 9:33:54 PM EDT – Like – Reply

I have no reason to dispute the time table offered here, and I am confident it is correct. However, there still seems to be a time lag and, to some extent, an interest lag in the story. European reports have been coming from the scene of most of the action, Tskhinvali, and by midday CNN was reporting from there as well. The FNC reports I have seen were from the somewhat remote and safer Tbilisi. That doesn't make coverage any less real, although it may be a bit more stale.
My scenario is that there may have been a lack of editorial discretion, a lack of preparation and a general lack of knowledge about the region and the conflict. All of that can be said about CNN, as well. CNN wins no prizes. Its morning show was almost as vacuous and contentless as F&F. No surprise in any of this. A lazy Sunday in late summer .... An easy to cover sex scandal ought to have set the agenda and satisfied all those viewers intent in reveling in someone else's sleaze.
The news is now out there, and CNN, with its vast international networks and FNC with its European connection will undoubtedly begin to cover the story as well.
If you have followed this closely, you know that as the media finally began to focus on this, events on the ground began to change perceptibly. Link? Who knows? We may know over time. We may never know.
I do think CNN and FNC both feel like they got caught with their pants down. Both did.
For now, I am just thankful that CNN began to focus, a bit belatedly, and FNC, a bit more belatedly.
August 10, 2008, 11:00:24 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike C.
I've all but avoided cable news this weekend because the stories are just too depressing: the Russia-Georgia situation (I wish we were talking about the Peach State instead of the Republic that was invaded by the once-again-evil Russia), the ongoing Anthony family saga. and the sudden death of Bernie Mac.
August 10, 2008, 11:11:53 PM EDT – Like – Reply

johnny dollar
A shame. You missed 5.5 hours of Julie Banderas!
August 10, 2008, 11:40:47 PM EDT – Like – Reply

A shame. You missed 5.5 hours of Julie Banderas!  
johnny dollar | Homepage | 08.10.08 - 11:45 pm | #  
I didn't. Yowza!
August 10, 2008, 11:52:13 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Olby Sucks
The FNC reports I have seen were from the somewhat remote and safer Tbilisi. That doesn't make coverage any less real, although it may be a bit more stale.
by mark
Get over on one of your fav Olbermann fan blogs and see if you can talk him in to getting over there and "reporting" amidst the missle-fire! He does that stuff, right?
August 11, 2008, 12:14:16 AM EDT – Like – Reply

Olby Sucks
I'm surprised Amanpoor isn't over there defending Russia!
August 11, 2008, 12:18:37 AM EDT – Like – Reply

J$, surely that's a rhetorical question.
It's amazing how stupid and warped the thinking is on the blue blogs. If you told them George Bush and Dick Cheney were the ones behind the conflict in Georgia, they'd buy it. In fact, they're probably already spreading b.s. like that.
August 11, 2008, 12:34:58 AM EDT – Like – Reply

Mike C.
I just re-read the post. So, that's what that tactic is called "interview hijacking." In that case, the obscure comic used that tactic on "F&F Weekend" some months back, Mike Gravel used it on "The Factor" Wednesday night (or, at least, he filibustered), and Sen. Dodd used it in his "Factor" appearance last August. I reviewed that segment repeatedly in the hours and days following the airing, and I can tell you that Dodd's first response had nothing to do with the question he was asked. Also, Ann Wright in her last "Factor" appearance in March '07. I could go on forever with the countless instances I've witnessed interview hijacking. I am so glad I learned that term.
August 11, 2008, 12:57:14 AM EDT – Like – Reply

I'm surprised Amanpoor [sic] isn't over there defending Russia!
Let's see, Amanpour is a British subject. She travels a great deal. She may not have the required five (5) blank visa pages for entry into Russia or Russian-held territory. The Home Office is slightly more efficient than the State Department, so this might take a while. I know I once entered the USSR with what I thought to be five (5) blank pages. Standing in line at Immigration and Frontier Control, I realized there was a small, almost invisible visa stamp from Mexico on the 5th page. Boy was I worried. Fortunately, the guard didn't notice it and stamped right over it.
Further logic: The UK is an EU nation. Georgia is an EU nation. The Russian Federation are not EU nations. I am thinking Amanpour's views, although I doubt she would betray them in news reports, are pro-EU, thereby pro-Georgia. I know if Canada invaded Alabama, my sympathies would be with Alabama. Change that. If Canada invaded Missouri, my sympathies would be with Missouri.
Logical. I am sure you agree.
August 11, 2008, 1:15:44 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Damian G.
Mark, I believe that Amanpour line was meant to be tongue-in-cheek. OS was referring to her past biases, such as her decidedly non-objective, anti-Serb coverage of the Bosnian conflict and her hosting the "God's Warriors" series which sought to place devout Christians on the same moral plane as Islamic terrorists.
August 11, 2008, 2:04:01 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Indeed it was Damian, but I do find Ms. Amanpour's work stringently, judiciously objective, so objective that the "sides" in any of her reports both think they have won something and lost something.
I can't really speak to the Serb coverage as my recollection is faulty. During most of this time, I was working in Europe and living in a place without CNN International (BBC, TV5 and WDR).
As to the "God's Warriors" series, I took the point to be that when we get to the stage of religious fundamentalism, in its true and absolute sense, the beliefs or sects become in some measure indistinct. I believe that to be true. The notion becomes not one of God coming to God's People, but of God coming to "me". I find that terribly dangerous, not that God is doing it, he or she is not, but that someone believes God is. Too theological, I know, and your point is not lost. Since Amanpour outraged Christians, Jews and Muslims, she may just have been doing her job, I might suggest.
We may have a bona fide and respectful disagreement between ourselves, but I view Amanpour is the English language's stellar journalist today.
August 11, 2008, 2:55:25 PM EDT – Like – Reply

As to the "God's Warriors" series, I took the point to be that when we get to the stage of religious fundamentalism, in its true and absolute sense, the beliefs or sects become in some measure indistinct.Mark | 08.11.08 - 3:00 pm | #  
Bigamy, ant-homosexual, ant-abortion, our faith is the only way to salvation beliefs is indistinct from bigamy, anti-homosexual, honor killing, out faith is the only true faith, if you do not convert our faith says it's ok to cut your head off and if your country suppots Israel, promotes freedom and democracy, our faith requires us to kill as many of you as possible and CNN and it's infidel reporter better not say we're worse than those other infidels.
August 11, 2008, 6:39:02 PM EDT – Like – Reply

We have a pretty good example of Christian fundamentalism and bigamy, with a good measure of incest and rape of minors, right here in Texas, right now, vstol, all sanctioned and mandated by God, I am told, and Lord knows Texans do love to fill people full of drugs and watch them quiver, shake and die, all in the name of justice, and God, of course.
August 11, 2008, 7:05:40 PM EDT – Like – Reply

johnny dollar
And that concludes the discussion of religion. Here endeth the lesson.
August 11, 2008, 7:09:27 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Olby Sucks
Since Amanpour outraged Christians, Jews and Muslims, she may just have been doing her job, I might suggest.
by mark
I missed the part where she "outraged" the muslims. Happen to have a link?
August 11, 2008, 7:57:31 PM EDT – Like – Reply

Fox Fan
So sayeth the prophet Johnny, disciple of cable news, who begot J$P, who begot Fox Fan, who begot this comment. And the world rejoiced with great wonder and sent offerings of frankincense and myrrh.
August 11, 2008, 8:10:16 PM EDT – Like – Reply

DM on the Factor:
To say Edwards is an empty suit does a disservice to clothes hangers.  

August 13, 2008, 9:16:39 PM EDT – Like – Reply