A Kinder, Gentler Roger?

Sep 26 2011 @ 11:40am

Ailes gets a glowing write up from Howie Kurtz. But this does not strike me as a mellowing:

The talk turns to terrorism. Ailes is angry about an Associated Press report that 29 worshipers were killed by a suicide bomber in Baghdad’s largest Sunni mosque during prayers. “How do we know they were worshiping?” he demands. “I think the AP is so far over the hill, they’ve become left wing, antiwar. Gotta watch their copy.”

Take a few steps out. Ailes seems to believe that an assumption that Muslims in a Mosque were at prayer is a function of "left-liberalism" not empirical fact. Why? Because, persumably, the sacrilegious carnage would reflect badly on the aftermath of the Iraq war and occupation – showing that we had achieved almost nothing after so much sacrifice. This is wrong because it would be "anti-war," and therefore "left wing". Not because it's untrue. Then there's this gaffe:

Ailes has a blunt rejoinder to those who say he runs a biased outfit: “Every other network has given all their shows to liberals. We are the balance.”

That was Chris Wallace's position. Essentially, it means that because Ailes thinks the other networks are biased to the left, his is biased to the right. That's fair enough and pretty clear from the words both have used. But say that and they will surreally deny it with straight faces once again. Then this:

Ailes keeps a wary eye on anchor Shepard Smith, who occasionally backs aspects of the Obama record: “Every once in a while Shep Smith gets out there where the buses don’t run and we have a friendly talk.”

If you want to understand why Fox News is now and has long been a propaganda, not a news, outlet, here's a tiny little sliver of truth behind all of it. If facts and propaganda collide, propaganda always wins. If a journalist pursues news without such an agenda, well, he or she gets "a friendly talk."