The media landscape has changed drastically in the centuries since Gutenberg tossed out the first mass produced propaganda. What has not changed over the years is brainwashing techniques. Each medium and era creates its own disinformation as needed. However, only ‘Merkin ‘Ceptionalism could have combined the Yellow Journalism of the Hearst and Pulitzer newspaper era with radio’s most dangerous demagogue, Father Charles Coughlin. The result: a “Fair and Balanced” tee vee network that — when fact-checked — is more wrong than right, despite how right it leans.
Oh, sure, Fox “News” tries Having Their Hate and Defeating Dems Too because, as Fairness and Accuracy In Reporting [FAIR] pointed out this week: “At Fox News Latino, immigrants go from target to target audience.” But, Fox doesn’t operate separate channels for its Black and White audiences, at least not yet. If the last 2 weeks of reporting and punditry tell us anything, Fox “News” is willing write off one side of the racial divide for generations; the same way the Republicans have written off the Latinos that Fox “News” is hypocritically trying to attract. Or, to purposely misquote Kanye West, “Fox ‘News’ doesn’t care about Black people.”
Fox News Injects Race Into Beating
Death Of Bosnian Man In St. Louis
Police Ruled Out Race And Ferguson
Protests As Motivating Factor For The Crime
Fox Guest: We Will See “More White Americans
Under Attack By Black Americans” Because
Of How Obama Dealt With Ferguson
Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson: “Michael Brown
Is Dead Because He Had Failing
Parents … Obama Understands That”
Fox’s Bolling Asks “Can Black People Be Considered Racist?”
Bolling: “You Will Hear Some Of The
Most Racist Things Coming Out Of Black Men …
But They’re Never Considered Or Called Racist”
Only a Hearst or a Pulitzer — or a Fox “News” viewer — would display such a lack of empathy for people of colour in a grab for ratings. Since this week was only the tip of an Titanic iceberg, in a truly Fair and Balanced world Fox “News” would be forced to change its call letters to WPNN, the White People’s News Network.
Speaking of White People: If he’s not denying White Privilege is a real thing, then Bill O’Reilly is expressing surprise that the folks in Black restaurants don’t yell, “MFer, I want more ice tea.” FFF would bet the bank that when O’Reilly sat down to eat with Al Sharpton (yeah, I know!) at Sylvia’s (Yeah! I know!) they forgot to deliver his ice tea and this ad libbed line was simple projection. But, I digress.
What makes O’Reilly so clueless — on any topic you can name — is that he’s so clueless — on any topic you can name. If that’s not funny enough, here’s where the existential comedy comes in: he invites people who (occasionally) know something about a topic onto his show. However, rather than letting them talk, thereby enlightening himself and/or his audience, he interrupts to demagogue every interview (unless it’s a position that agrees with his).
This trait is never more obvious than when it’s about race because he knows more about the Black Experience than anyone. This week, he outdid himself with clueless racism: Bill O’Reilly: NFL Players Using ‘Hands Up’ Gesture Aren’t “Smart Enough To Know What They’re Doing” or by cherry-picking statistics to argue O’Reilly: There Is No ‘Plague of White Cops Acting Violently Against Blacks’. That easily demonstrated falsehood came during the Shout Fest ‘Hold Up!’ O’Reilly, Tavis Smiley Throw Down over ‘Minuscule’ Police Shootings, in which Bill O’Reilly cites faulty data for claim about shooting deaths of blacks, whites by police. PunditFact rated that pile of manure Mostly False:
O’Reilly said, 123 African-Americans and 326 white people were shot dead by police in 2012.
He referenced recent federal numbers but failed to mention their well-documented flaws. We have not found any experts who will vouch for numbers that purport to represent annual fatal shootings by police, as there are gaping holes within each dataset.
That wasn’t the only outlet Debunking Bill O’Reilly’s argument about racism in American policing. at the Daily Dot notes:
Unsurprisingly, O’Reilly’s argument is riddled with holes.
First of all, Americans should not cheer for themselves simply because police kill fewer black people today than in 1964, when Jim Crow and the civil rights movement led to some of the most disproportionately brutal resistance that the U.S. has ever seen.
Secondly, what O’Reilly’s statistics show—but what O’Reilly leaves unsaid—is that black people are killed at disproportionately higher rates than white people by police officers. African Americans are 14 percent of the population but 30 percent of the police-shooting deaths. This is double the rate that one might expect from O’Reilly’s fantasy world in which race is not a factor.
The numbers get even grimmer when narrowed down a bit. Police kill young black men at a rate 21 times higher than the equivalent rate for young white men.
It’s bad when even butter-wouldn’t-melt-in-her-mouth Fox’s Dana Perino [says]: O’Reilly Overreacted Last Night on Ferguson.
But, credit where credit’s due. Every once in there’s a glimmer of humanity: Even Establishment Hack Bill O’Reilly is Disturbed by what Happened to Eric Garner. Just when you think there’s hope, he turns around and says something ridiculously racist (and possibly homophobic) like O’Reilly: Garner Protesters Partying, Smoking Pot, Drinking, ‘Having a Gay Old Time’.
FFF is willing to bet a second bank that when Bill O’Reilly says “I was out there last night” he’s lying. Anyone with photographic evidence that Bill O’Reilly actually put himself in the middle of a crowd of protesting Black folk, please send to this writer’s Twitter feed. Photoshopped evidence more than welcome. But I digress, again.
“I was out there last night.” WATCH:
We can’t leave this MoFo without mentioning O’Reilly Hosts Psychotherapists To Diagnose “Sadistic” War On Christmas. What FFF finds sadistic is having its phony nose rubbed in the phony birthday of the phony son of a phony deity over a Phony War on Christmas that Bill O’Reilly invented in the first place.
Of course, only Fox “News” feels a patriotic duty to stick up for ‘Merka’s God, as if an omnipotent being needs any help from mere media mortals like them. Just this week Christian Bale Says Moses Was ‘Terrorist,’ ‘Freedom Fighter’; Fox & Friends Reacts. What’s funny is that Christian Bale is playing Moses in the upcoming Biblical extravaganza “Exodus: Gods and Kings,” but Bale’s words must have offended God’s ears. Words are inadequate for this task. Just watch God’s Press Agent defend the faith from a Hollywood heathens:
How will posterity treat this mass media era? Years from now what will be the Roger Ailes/Fox “News” legacy? FFF predicts it go down in history in the very same chapter as Yellow Journalism, William Randolph Hearst, Joseph Pulitzer, Father Charles Coughlin, Rush Limbaugh, Alex Jones, Glenn Beck, and other current media demagogues. It will if I have anything to do about it.
Headly Westerfield doesn’t consider himself a Yellow Journalist, preferring to think of the Not Now Silly Newsroom as Activist Journalism. Your mileage may vary.