FOX and Facts

So if you thought the controversy in Wisconsin was over; you were wrong. Smaller protests continue outside the Capitol in Madison and the biggest controversy yet has been discovered inside. Protesters were inside the Capitol for weeks. During that time they hung a number of fliers all over the place. Fliers don’t stick to the wall magically, however, so the protesters used tape. After they left the fliers were taken down. This all makes sense. As we all know, when you remove tape it still leaves a little sticky residue on the surface it was attached to. If you put tape on a painted wall and pull it up it could remove some of the paint. This is why you use painters tape and not packing tape when painting a room. FOXNews caught on to the story that the protesters weren’t so considerate. On multiple Fox shows in was reported that protesters did $7.5 million in damages during the protest. $7.5 million dollars is a lot of money. It would lead you to think these protesters have no respect for government. To cause that amount of damage is irresponsible at best and criminal at worst. Scott Walker must have been right. Obviously unions are evil. If it takes $7.5 million dollars to clean up tape residue that janitor is making way to much money.

Unfortunately, that’s not the truth. $7.5 million is what multiple Fox newscasters said, but it wasn’t an accurate number. The real cost of thousands of people squatting in the Capitol came out to about $350,000. While that is still quite a few pennies it’s not even remotely the same as 7.5 million. Look at it this way. A man who makes $7.5 million a year looks at a man who makes $350,000 a year the same way you look at a dog. They’re cute, but really not at your level. They probably don’t belong to the yacht club.

It’s ridiculous that Fox put out this figure, and they did it repeatedly. They took a very anti-protest slant in their coverage. Michelle Malkin called the protesters “union thugs.” Did you see the protests? There was chanting and drum circles. It looked more like the crowd at Burning Man than a meeting of Jimmy Hoffa and the Teamsters. How can Fox call themselves a “news organization” and then report like this? It is an obvious attempt to turn public opinion against the protesters in Wisconsin. Think of it this way. In crime dramas on television you often see a lawyer make a statement, then the other lawyer objects and the statement is withdrawn. They jury already heard it. They can try to put it out of their minds but that is hard to do. While they might not consider that statement directly, they will use it to rationalize something they might not have believed before. They may also just disregard the judge and base their opinion on it. Fox reported less than justified claims to promote their agenda. They didn’t care if they had to retract it later. They knew if you say it enough people will believe it. Say what you want people to believe loudly, because a retraction can be made quietly. It makes you wonder what the common Fox viewer thinks. It must be something like:

“$7.5 million in damages. That seems like a lot of money. Was it oil or Goo-Gone that was trading at $105 a barrel this week?”

This isn’t the first time Fox has done this. Not even six months ago, President Obama went on a trip to Asia. Apparently, part of foreign relations is relating with foreigners. Fox didn’t like that. They put out multiple stories about how the trip was costing taxpayers $200 million a day. No one at Fox thought that might be a little high? I know jet fuel is expensive but that would be ridiculous. $200 million dollars is about what it costs this country to conduct the war in Afghanistan. Still, there was FOX telling us about the extravagance of the Obama Administration. It wouldn’t be so bad but people watch them. It’s disturbing that people watch 24-hour cable news at all. It’s worse that the vast majority of them watch Fox. It’s interesting because the majority of talk radio is conservative also. Liberals must use the internet.

People used to say, “You can’t believe everything you see on TV.” Did we forget that? FOXNews is setting a trend for bad journalism and we’re letting it happen. On Fox they often say, “We report. You decide.”  Are we supposed to decide if what they just said is completely untrue? Their motto is “FOXNews: Fair and Balanced.” They should seriously consider changing it to, “FOXNews: True or False.” We have to hold news sources accountable just like politicians. The press is supposed to be the foil of government. They ensure that government can’t get away with lying to us. If we just let the press lie to us, we have no source for real information. In a highly polarized society, more information would be a very good thing but only if it is real information and not spin.


2 responses to “FOX and Facts

  1. You can fool all the people some of the time. You can fool some of the people all the of time. But, you can’t fool all the people all of the time!

    If you repeat a lie enough times, and no one challenges it, the lie appears to be the truth.

    It seems that man just naturally resists authority. Government is perceived to be authoritative and Fox News is capitalizing on this.

  2. I agree. It justs angers me that they are the most watched cable news network. How can people sit back and not call them on reporting baseless facts. I guess the only thing we can do is keep speaking against it and hope that people will listen. Thanks for the comment. I also read what you said on the Kansas Free Press, I would love to contribute there. What would I need to do?

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