Thursday, October 13, 2016

The Unfair and Off-Balance News

The biggest mystery of all the ones percolating today (the ominous "Clinton Death List" not least among them) is the persistent myth that FOX News is crazily biased while other news outlets are not. This lie is instantly dispelled when you sit down and watch all the major purveyors of news in turn.

Case in point: Last night I channel-surfed between CNN, FOX and MSNBC. Over on CNN the lineup of "expert" panelists sat ready to weigh in on heavy subjects, like did Donald Trump ever kiss a woman without her consent and if so, how disgusting. They gossiped back and forth like schoolgirls about this for a long while, and finally anchor Anderson Cooper changed the subject, promising that after a commercial break they would return to tackle the pithy subject of a new batch of Hillary Clinton's emails just dispatched by WikiLeaks.

Over on FOX they were already talking about those emails: Another panel of "experts" were analyzing the content, divulging who said what to whom, and considering if and how they reflected on Clinton herself. Some of it was pretty damning stuff, with critical comments directed towards Catholicism calling it a "a middle ages dictatorship," a sarcastic demand for a check for six million dollars from a Saudi sheik to get a verbal "thank you" from the Clinton Foundation, and a suggestion for Hillary to include something aimed at "those needy Latinos" in an upcoming speech.

Assuming they were now on it over at CNN, I switched back and found that their coverage of Hillary's leaked emails consisted of showing video of Donald Trump trash-talking about them at one of his rallies earlier in the day. Peering over his designer glasses, Anderson intoned that Donald had a lot to say about those leaked emails and was using them as a battering ram against Clinton. The rest of the panelists piled on in agreement: that mean old Donald! The whole story took about three minutes of air time and included not one thing about the content of the emails.

Meanwhile over at MSNBC -- the station that idiotically hired Brian "Liar-liar-pants-on-fire" Williams to somehow report the news truthfully -- a young, well-coifed unknown female whose name was followed by the words "Democratic Strategist" said that really, the content of the emails did not matter, but rather it was how they got leaked that mattered more. Was it the Russians and did Trump do it? Probably, the snarky anchor whose name escapes me concluded. And that was pretty much it.

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