Tag Archives: FOX News

Leftist’s say what?

Over the past few weeks the White House has asked other news organizations to disregard programing and statements made by Fox News. Why is the administration doing this you ask? It’s simple! With the current struggle to pass a socialized healthcare system and to promote a liberal agenda, the administration seeks to block the conservative perspective to further their efforts for more government control. The administration claims that Fox News channel presents the news and issues with a conservative stance.

I suppose Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow are 100% neutral and unbiased with their news reporting. Otherwise this would not be an issue on valid reporting but an issue on promoting a leftist agenda. For an administration that claims “bipartisan” tactics, the decision to make a public statement about a conservative  news station only contrasts their efforts (or lack their of).

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When metalheads and commentators collide

Only on Fox News can you hear the following…

“After this show is over, I’m walking back down to the Rio to kill everyone.”
“That’s awesome!”

Yes, I know it’s supposed to be a comedy show (don’t worry, I spoke to a producer and the jokes took a sick day during that particular installment) but I think this is still worthy of a collective, “Huh?” or perhaps a group, “But…why?”

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Filed under Media, Morgan, Music

Passing half of the torch

As a good friend of mine said about a month ago, if anyone suggested the idea of a library in this day and age, a sort of communal stomping ground where books and in many cases, DVDs, CDs and even video games (something I’ve never been able to understand) were available for no charge, with the only limitation would be a system of time limits and fines if said limits are exceeded coupled with the scornful gaze of the librarians when you try and check something out only to find that you owe $5 for renting “Derailed,” they would immediately be kicked around by publishing and media companies as a nutcase. How dare this chap encourage the further mooching by Americans off of their wealth of informative and cultural products? It’s bad enough having to deal with the likes of Limewire (I’m sure there are still a few people using it) and the multitude of torrent sites, but to have a brick-and-mortar haven for freeloaders to simply come in with a card and come out with a cartload of media, well that would just spell the end of everything, wouldn’t it?

I’m not going to go into the history of how libraries came to be, and just why they’ve remained despite not making very much economic sense (since we all know the social and cultural importance of institutions is unimportant), instead I’d like to shift the topic toward public ownership of media. What’s going on in Iran right now is revolutionary, not just because of the political messages being sent through the streets of Tehran, but also due to the way in which it’s being covered. The networks have barely any coverage of their own, the papers have minimal reach within Iran’s borders and filling in this gap is a breadth of amateur coverage. Nobody has to buy a paper or turn into a channel to discover what’s going on in Iran, and while this has been true with pretty much every news event of the past few years, never before (save for the initial coverage of the London bombings several years ago) has the majority of the coverage originated from amateurs.

A little birdie told me all about Iran...

A little birdie told me all about Iran...

Blogs and aggregate news sites are mooches, taking the reporting that other agencies slaved over and repackaging with a link and a few deft comments (sounds familiar, no?) but now there’s a undercurrent of these sites not doing their own reporting, but instead being the main conduit of the common man covering the events around him. Whereas before there needed to be a reporter on the scene, given an enormity of importance, folks will carry on with the reporting as they see fit, leaving the rest of the media in a reversed position. Anyone watching broadcast news over the past week knows that the media is just commenting on reporting that originates from non-reporters, instead of the blogs leering over Fox and Friends and blabbering about a report they did.

Yes, there are massive limitations here. With the lack of a journalism background comes a lack in objectivity (not in the commenting that television hosts do, but in the gathering of information and coverage of events, which is a critical differentiation to make) and little patience for uninteresting matters that don’t draw much attention on a national scale. This is where “big media,” newspapers in particular, can swoop in and completely take control of localized coverage, something that many companies are already trying to do.

Despite its obvious awkwardness about having to use YouTube clips as the basis for their programs and not being ahead of the information-gathering pack, the media, there is a bit of hope to be found in this double-sided Iranian revolution. It might come to be that in situations where amateur journalists can have the will and the access to thrive, the media can cut many of their costs, letting the average Joes to take up the bill on the group while they serve not as the gatherer, analysit and judge of every bit of information, but instead as a service provider, setting up a portal through which amateur reporting can be seen and then coupled with both professional reporting (albiet on a smaller scale) and the professional (a term used loosely here, given the quality of cable news) commentating and debate that only a large media company can provide.

Think of it like this: Whereas before the likes of CNN were rock bands that served as their own managers and owned the venues they performed in, they might now be better suited for merely owning the venues and occasionally peforming, allowing smaller acts performing similar numbers to share the spotlight for most of the set.

Bringing it back to the library comment, just by making cultural and information-based goods free doesn’t mean that you’re immediately crippling their production. Instead, the media now has to provide people a reason to tune into them or buy their products on top of being a source of information that, as Iran has proven, can be readily obtained through more personal, cheaper venues. It’s all about adding value to a product, the value in owning a book is in convinience, being able to toss it about without worrying about damages, not having a time limit attached to its completion. The value in news may not simply be tied to having the best reporters in the field, but rather, in recognizing the best mix of professional and amateur material and serving as a conduit through which people would be compelled to purchase the product through the sheer quality and quantity of options.

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Filed under Books, Business, Culture wars, Media, Morgan, Technology

Selective memory, it’s a beautiful thing

“Tonight is the night journalism died,” according to Fox News, all because of ABC’s big series of broadcasts from inside the White House in which they’re basically serving as a megaphone for the administration. Now, there’s credence to this, but it would help Fox’s argument if they hadn’t drank the Bush administration’s Kool-Aid and done the same thing a few years ago.

Either Karl Rove has the memory of a goldfish, or the MIB flashes your memory once you leave the government.

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Filed under Government, Media, Morgan, Obama

Boehner Taking Advantage of FOX’s Rejection Of Fact-Based Journalism.

Fox News has lost its credibility when it has the House Republican Minority Leader John Boehner write a story on its blog starting with the phrase, “With Democrats now firmly in charge of Congress and the White House, Washington is increasingly out of control.”

Who even wants to read it with an open mind now, besides the far right?

Let us address the issue that Republicans have in which, as Boehner puts it, “government is crossing lines [Americans] never thought they’d see their government cross.”

Really, John Boehner? This is who you chose to voice your opinion through?

Really, John Boehner? This is who you chose to voice your opinion through?

In the wake of an administration that nearly destroyed the reputation of the Republican party, it’s pretty ballsy to say that.

The only thing that can be referred to in this statement is the amount of money spent in the bills passed since January 20. And yes, it is an incredible amount, and yes, it is unprecedented. But as far as lines being crossed, it is worth looking at what lines were crossed from 2001 to 2008.

Vastly increased anti-terrorism operations that caused massive controversy–seemingly for not at times–allowed the Bush administration to cut back important programs to increase military spending and start a war justified by the anger and frustration of the Western world after September 11.

Incredibly anti-democratic policies allowed the institution of Guantanamo Bay, whose controversies are well enough known to invite UN leaders to suggest that the US committed war crimes in hosting it. Fortunately this is the U.S., and that probably won’t go anywhere.

Radical education policies angered teachers and parents all around the country, and put into place funding that relied on controversial testing techniques, and allowed schools and students to slip through the cracks, all at a time when the United States’ student output is lagging far behind that of India and some other Eastern powers.

So these are only a few of the talking points here. This could be an entire post in itself. But what is more important is that all this seems to be forgotten for the attempts of the 111th Congress to revitalize the economy. It’s like the kid that bullies until he gets picked on, and then tries to criticise. It just doesn’t work.

Tainting your policies in favor of making the other party look bad will get nothing done. I’ve said it before, but apparently John Boehner doesn’t read my articles in the Pendulum.

What is more interesting about all this to me is the implication that Republicans using new media is a radical and great change in the way Americans are informed. Sure, government was a bit behind on that concept. But trying to piggyback off the success of Obama in that light is not only ignorant, but is an insult to the intelligence of the internet community. They know well enough that Republicans aren’t the only ones utilizing blogs and media.

So it seems like FOX is more of a forum for right wing media men to make vast statements in lieu of any contradicting argument. It’s a style of op-ed that basically assumes that its audience won’t know enough about an issue to be able to disagree. And while none of it is an outright lie, it is littered with implications that are just not true.

O’Reilly and Ann Coutler bank on this all the time. However, politicians should have the pride not to group themselves into such a disputed organization.

Overall, the Republican party has done a good job of making its feelings known with regards to spending. And it has been effctive in mediating the bills for the most part. But it is throwing away its credibility with statements that try to demonize an administration that’s been in office for under 100 days.

And, most of all, Mr. Boehner, please try to pick a more credible outlet to give your opinions through. Even if a large amount of your constituency watches and lives by the word of Rupert Murdoch, it lends itself right off the bat to dispute.

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Filed under Government, Jack Dodson, Media, Obama