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In the great 1974 film Godfather II.
There’s a scene about halfway through where Hyman Roth and
Michael Corleone and all the American gangsters are
gathered in a patio in Havana and it’s Hyman Roth’s 67th birthday,
and he’s giving a slice of cake to each gangster got -
Louis from Chicago you run the Copacabana, Frankie you get
the prostitutes, he’s dividing up the island among all the
American gangsters and appropriately enough the birthday cake has an outline
of Cuba on it, he’s giving them a slice of Cuba. And while
Hyman Roth is doing this he says: “Isn’t it great to be in
a country with a government that respects private
enterprise?” And that’s how media policies have been done
in the United States for the past 50 years and it’s
increasing in the last 20 years. Extraordinarily powerful
lobbyists duke it out behind closed doors for the biggest
slice of the cake. The public knows nothing about it, it
doesn’t participate.
And that’s the problem we face.
Media is the nervous system of a democracy. If it’s not
functioning well, the democracy can’t functioning. We’re
heading towards an election where most people are never
going to be in a room with Kerry or Bush. What they learn
about the candidates is what the media shows them or tells
them. Decides not to show, not to tell.
People are faced with critical choices about the future of
the country when they go into the voting booth.
And I go in. And I have been, through the course of a
campaign cycle subject to false, distorted, caricaturing,
And I may not even know where it’s coming from because
often there’s an echo effect off places like cable and like
radio and those wrong pieces of information are repeated and
repeated, by the time it reaches me, I don’t even know what
the source was.
This is the environment we’re living in and it’s really,
it’s fundamentally undermining democracy which is based on
knowing some good and solid information so I can make an
informed choice.
When you see the properties Rupert Murdoch owns around the
world, the strong, conservative point-of-view that those
properties often reflect, it’s different than ABC or CBS or NBC. Sure, they reflect
a point-of-view but not nearly as strong or consistently
strong from one ideological perspective.
Murdoch actually bought the station in 1985.
And actually left us alone for at least the first three
years of his ownership, partly because we were so successful and prosperous that there
was no reason to monkey with us.
At WTTG our success insulated us to a certain degree.
And it was kind of like being in an office and seeing
people come down with the flu around you. We knew the flu
eventually might reach us, but we were hoping if we took
enough vitamins that we’d never catch the flu.
It was clear during those years that Murdoch, who had
absolutely adored Ronald Reagan, adored him, had a lot of admiration
for the group of Republicans that controlled Congress
and certainly on Capitol Hill.
We received an order from one of Murdoch’s apparatchiks, if
you will, that we should cut away from our newscast
and start carrying a fawning tribute to Ronald Reagan that was airing at the Republican
Convention. We were stunned because up until that point
we were allowed to do legitimate news. And suddenly
we were ordered, from the top, to carry propaganda; carry
Republican right-wing propaganda.
There was a cultural underpinning to what Murdoch wanted.
Race issues, AIDS. I constantly remember complaints that
there was too much being done on AIDS. He also couldn’t stand the Kennedy’s.
Ted Kennedy, who was a long-time opponent of Rupert
Murdoch, and, and one celebrated occasion, we were ordered
to run a long uncut piece from A Current Affair that was rehashing
the whole matter of Chappaquiddick.
It had zero news value. We were told, ‘you had to run this
thing uncut’. You could not even edit it down and just run
a snippet of it. I think they evolved in later years and especially
after Roger Ailes took over and, and really got
the Fox News Channel up and running into a far more sophisticated
kind of operation. What we saw, in my era, was,
was really the, the birth of this sort of thing and the roots
of what came later.
I’d just like to say how delighted I am that we’ve now
reached this moment, when we can firmly announce the
starting of a Fox News Channel and a much greater effort on
a build up of Fox News in every area.
We’d like to be premier journalists. We’d like to restore
objectivity where we find it lacking and ah, certainly there could be that interpretation
because of my background but I left politics a number of
years ago and have running this organization for the last
two years. So we just expect to do fine, balanced journalism.
I was a Fox employee for 3 years. I worked in the News.
On air or behind the camera?
I’d rather not answer that. I think I’d rather keep
myself anonymous. You’ll disguise my voice right?
Larry Johnson Former Fox News Contributor I’ve heard directly from folks, both as
correspondents and as bookers, who have expressed very grave
reservations, almost as if they’re being monitored by
a Stalinist system, afraid to be seen talking to the wrong person
or having the wrong kind of email exchange.
You’re either one of us or one of them, and in leaving Fox
News, for example, there were a number of people at the
organization, at the head of the organization, tried to
ruin my career simply because I was leaving, because I
didn’t leave on their terms, because I refused to sign a
confidentiality agreement, that was another reason for them
Americans Trust only One. The Only Place. American’s Newsroom. Fox
News.”
It’s very much a, an environment of fear.
It was made very clear to us that our activities were being
monitored and if someone wasn’t watching it live they were
at least recording it and they would review it after the
fact to see what we did.
We weren't necessarily, as it was told to us, a news
gathering organization so much as we were a proponent of a
point-of-view.
Anonymous 2 Former Fox News Reporter Fox has already been successful in sort of
branding me as somebody who can't be trusted. And as a result,
I'm already sort of on thin ice regarding my current
employer.
I’d been warned by people. There were a number of people
who pulled me inside and said, “Look, you know, I don’t
know, I mean, I know that you want to work and I know that
you need a job, but you might want to think twice about
taking this job because, really, it is a very conservative
news network.”
Now that I’ve learned comedy writing at the Fox News
Channel I guess I should be doing stand up in the clubs.’
I think that if you don’t go along with the mindset of the
hierarchy in New York, if you challenge them on their
attitudes about things, you’re history.
I suspect your research has discovered, the memoranda that
were written by John Moody and by Roger in terms of setting the tone for
the day. The message of the day is a very political device.
Date: 5/9/2003 From: Moody Let spend a good deal of time on the battle
over judicial nominations, which the President will address
this morning. Nominees who both sides admit are qualified
are being held up because of their POSSIBLE, not demonstrated
views on one issue – abortion. This should be a trademark
issue for FNC today and in days to come.
There was nothing covert about the way the managing editors
in New York or Washington operated. They made it perfectly
clear what they expected from us.
The so-called 9/11 commission has already been meeting.
In fact, this is its eighth session. The fact that former Clinton and both former and current
Bush administration officials are testifying gives
it a certain tension, but this is not, “what did he know
and when did he know it” stuff. Don’t turn this into Watergate.
Every morning there was a detailed list of subjects to talk
about and not talk about.
Kerry’s speech on the economy at Georgetown is likely to
move onto the topic of Iraq. We should take the beginning
of Kerry’s speech, see if it contains new information (aside from a promise to create
10 million jobs)and see if other news at that time is
more compelling. It is not required to take it start to finish.
They were just actually issuing edicts to the reporters to
control what they could say and how they could say it.
Let’s refer to the US marines we see in the foreground as
“sharpshooters” no snipers, which carries a negative
connotation.
When Headquarters sent the memo every morning and said, “we
want to touch on the following issues, we want to cover the
following stories, we want to do them in this particular
way”, our job and our objective then was to execute the
plan.
The pictures from Abu Graib prison are disturbing. Today
we have a picture – aired on Al Arabiyn – of an American
hostage being held with a scarf over his eyes, clearly
against his will. Who’s outraged on his behalf?
The real revolutionary breakthrough of Fox has been its
eliminative journalism. That’s the thing to understand.
What Fox News Channel has done is it’s stripped out any
notion of journalism as we’ve traditionally understood it
from its product. There is no journalism at the Fox News
Channel.
O’REILLY: Quiet!
Cut his mic.
Chad, stop, stop, stop, stop. Let me finish. Let me finish.
Chad.
I want to test if you’re an honest individual.
I’m sorry cut you off I know we’re in some
controversial stuff here but my religion didn’t teach me
that. But thank you very much for being here. It’s not fair. I know it’s a right-wing
network and you don’t want to hear this stuff.
It’s not about the kids, it’s about you Jamie.
I’m doing, I’m doing…
Thank you Jamie. Thank you. Good night. Thank you Jamie. Good night.
Don’t take your cheap little pathetic shot. I am
telling you that that’s what it is. You’re taking cheap little
pathetic shots. I’m trying to tell you what the truth is.
I’m just giving you his record. No you’re misrepresenting his record.
I’m telling the truth, Sir. That’s the truth
about his record. I understand what your position is but it’s
not correct. It’s probably why you’re on
satellite radio? I’d like to hear one single,
one single… Because you can’t get on regular radio.
Bill, if you are so concerned about public figures being bad role models for children
please stop rudely interrupting your guest and telling
them to shut up!
Well the “shut up” line has happened only once in six years, Miss Evans…
I think that asking a student to stay in the closet in order to go to school…
I’m asking you to shut up about sex…
Shut up. Shut up. Father killed at WTC. Jeremy M Glick
You want to know what I was doing. Please don’t
tell me to shut up. As respect. As respect…
Why did you have to tell them you were an atheist if you didn’t have any trouble reading,
why didn’t you just shut up?
What Jimmy Carter should do it privately give Mr. Bush his opinion and shut up publicly.
That would be best for the country.
And it is our duty as loyal Americans to shut up
once the fighting begins.
Once the war against Saddam begins we expect every American to support our military and
if they can’t do that – to shut up.
All he’s got in 6 and a half years, is that I
misspoke, that I labeled a Poke Award a Peabody. He writes
it in his book, tries to make me out to be a
Hey shut up. You had your thirty five minutes. Shut up.
Jeff Cohen, Former MSNBC/Fox News Contributor The techniques of odd, odd polling and odd
graphics of democrats and weird banners in the lower third
of your screen, these are all pretty sophisticated techniques
and they work
in collaboration
with the most genius
marketing slogan in history
which is fair and balanced.
So if you’re the graphics department and you can put up a
liberal flip flopper as the chyron, hey that’s great, because
the next time the graphics department has a discussion with
management, management say yeah you guys have been doing a
great job.
Graphics are always moving in the background. They’ve sort of pioneered the
use of the American flag as an icon of your news broadcast.
Anonymous 2 Former Fox News Reporter So there’s a lot of stuff that people come
up with on their own, which in other news organizations you
would never think of coming up with some of the stuff, much less even
putting it on the air.
But at Fox News they’re sort of a, that you’re rewarded for
pushing the envelope.
The problem comes if you try to push the envelope or, God
forbid, should put in some sort of similar sort of style or
approach to Republican, then you get yourself in trouble.
Probably 1999 I created the Fox News Alert.
We were striving to accomplish a sense of urgency. Urgency in the sense that
what was about to be delivered after the Fox News Alert was
very important. Quote, unquote, shocking news.
Specifically Columbine. And all the other important news stories of that time
but now, looking back, now that I’m not there
I find it interesting that I’ve seen the Fox News Alert
used for stories like “Bennifer” J-Lo and Ben’s
relationship. I mean this, compared to a school shooting,
and there’s really no relationship to me and I don’t
understand why, based on what we originally created it for,
ah, why they would choose to use it for a news story like
that. Cause the sound and the visuals is associated, or
originally was associated, with things that were much more
important.
Martha Stewart Leaves Fed CT After Probation Meeting
And this is a Fox News Alert. A very busy day for
Martha Stewart. Earlier today she met with her parole
officer…
No, they deliberately blur it and, I find it very
hard to believe, you know, there’s no separation between
Bill O’Reilly the Interviewer and Bill O’Reilly with his
Talking Points. I mean, there’s just no separation at all.
Jimmy Carter is making yet another mistake and
this time, there’s no excuse for it. And that’s the memo.
Now for the top story tonight. Another view on this.
Jeff Cohen Former MSNBC/Fox News Contributor It’s very hard on Fox News to separate news
from commentary because it all blends together. That’s what
makes it so ridiculous, that slogan “We report you decide”,
because there’s no TV news channel in history that’s ever reported
less.
For example, a Brit Hume newscast, um, which is presented
as a newscast, um, I think you see a lot of attitude and
opinion, both from the anchor and the reports.
Welcome to Washington. I’m Brit Hume. There was further evidence today that President
Bush’s days of absorbing John Kerry’s attacks without counter-attack
are over.
Fox blurs the line between using commentary all over the
place. We are to believe that Brit Hume is the
anchor of a news outlet, he doesn’t bring strong politics
to it, he just happens to anchor the news cast like Peter
Jennings. On Sundays, Brit Hume turns into a rather
caustic right-wing pundit.
Look, this goes to Murdoch too. He doesn’t believe in
objectivity. He doesn’t believe, he has contempt for
journalism, I think, I mean, they wanted all news
to be a matter of opinion, ‘cause opinion can't be proven
false. And I think that’s very dangerous because
if people don’t have a set of facts that they can agree on,
I think it’s difficult to reach a consensus on, you know,
what’s correct public policy. I think it’s very dangerous
for elections as well.
It wasn’t so much a scripted design that promoted the offthe-
cuff ad-libs that you see so often on Fox News Channel,
it was sort of a reinforcement.
John Kerry is Jane Fonda with a Burberry scarf tied around his neck.
Any ad lib that made the Democrats look stupid and made the
Republicans look smart would get an ‘attaboy’, also a pat
on the back, a wink or a nod.
There’s an old pizza expression, you’ve tried all
the rest, now try the best. Some people say, especially on
that panel there, those commissioners, that Condoleezza
Rice might be the best and we haven’t heard from her
publicly yet on this point. Are you saying that the commission’s cheesy?
You wouldn’t say that. They’re crusty on the
panel.
John Kerry has Kim Jong Il on his side. Barbra Streisand. What could go wrong?
North Korea loves John Kerry. Really?
There’s no sense of integrity as far as having a
line that can't be crossed.
Not having that sort of line becomes very tempting for
somebody to self-promote by crossing the line, saying
something funny that you would never dare say if you were
stepping back and looking at it from the sense of a
journalism school and is this the right thing for
journalism? It would never happen.
Other journalists use phrases like “some people say” or
“officials say” when they’re trying to insert anonymously
information in a story that sort of advances the storyline.
Fox does it a different way. ‘Some people say’ is Fox’s cue
that “I’m pretending to be an anchor, so I can’t say
this is my opinion, or this is Roger Ailes’ opinion but
‘some people say.’” Some people say it would be a pretty good
choice…bring in the Hispanic vote.
Some people say, “nah, he’s posturing”.
Some people say, and excuse me I’ll get to you Joe
in a minute, but some people say that you may be setting up
to be running against Hilary in 2006 in the Senate.
Journalistically it’s a very peculiar technique because the
idea behind journalism is that you’re sourcing who you’re
referring to. This is just sort of a clever way
of inserting political opinion when you know it probably
shouldn’t be there.
Some people say that this might undermine what the
US troops are doing there
Some people say John Kerry has some similarities to
an earlier Massachusetts’s politician. Some people say in light of what happened
to the oil for food program.
Some people say, ‘supported by Iran.” Some say, I’ve heard a couple of people
say… Some say “it’s a sour grapes book.”
Some people say… Some people say…
Some people say it’s just too violent. There’s too
much blood. Some people say
Some people say… Well, some people say…
Some people say.
Ah, some say. Some people say.
Some are saying… Some people say…
There are some people who say something, if not
has already happened. Those are his words.
Some people say it’s “exploitive”. What do you say
to that?
I was given a folder, a little binder, that had the names of all the Fox News consultants,
you know, the people who were paid to come on
the air to give their opinions.
Larry Johnson Former Fox News Contributor To be a Fox News contributor means you’re
under contract and are getting paid a set amount.
Joining us from D.C. is Larry Johnson, former CIA
Officer and Former Deputy Director to the State Departments
Office of Counter Terrorism.
My services were in great demand in December of 2001.
The contract expired in January of 2003.
And the first thing that I noticed was that I recognized
all of the conservatives who were in the roster. They were
very well known people who had come from, you know, talk
radio or from some sort of political background, and so I
knew all of those people, and they were very, very strong
people.
I came in and was always, I was going to call it
For example, the edict came down apparently to stop
referring to suicide bombings in Israel as suicide
bombings, to call them homicide bombings. I thought that
was stupid and I continued to call them suicide bombings
because every bombing that kills someone is a homicide
bombing.
But when I looked at the liberal roster, there was only one
person’s name who I recognize, which I recognized, and that
was Bob Shrum, who is a very well known speechwriter and
political consultant in Washington. The other ones,
though, were people I had never heard of. My
entire background was in politics and political journalism,
so I knew pretty much all the players in D.C. and I had
never heard of these people.
The question came up about the ability of the United States
to fight two wars simultaneously. Going into Iraq is going to divert resources
and attention that should be focused on.
And Sean Hannity, being the right-wing cheerleader that he
is, was just, you know, incensed that I was, had the
temerity to suggest that we couldn’t.
We do have the ability and the resources, we’re
able to walk and chew gum, we can handle the situation in
Iraq.
And we can still finish the job of protecting against and another attack.
What happens is when the resources end up getting
diverted and particularly the airlift assets required…
Facts don’t seem to have any effect upon him.
What was unusual is it was after that appearance that, even
though I was under contract to Fox for another 8 weeks
roughly, They stopped using me.
Your government failed you. Those entrusted with
protecting you, failed you. And I, failed you.
And for that failure, I would ask, once all the facts are
out, for your understanding and for your forgiveness.
When Richard Clarke emerged it was obvious this was a
danger to the Administration because he had worked at the
highest echelons of the Bush Administration and it was
almost like Fox News was working off the playbook coming
out of the White House – that he had to be torn down that
he had to be turned into a Democrat, a Liberal, a Kerryguy.
He is bringing this up in the heat of a Presidential campaign.
Can you assume, from what he’s saying, that he is now become a political
operative? Do you feel that there is a
political payback component to Mr. Clarke’s comments?
He is, as some have suggested, auditioning for a
job in the Kerry Administration. It is a fella who is sucking up to another
Administration with the hopes of being rewarded.
When he came to me to ask for my support with Tom
Ridge. He had been angling for a top job in the
Homeland Security department and did not get it.
See one of the things that Fox does and conservatives do is
they don’t have to win every argument but if they can muddy
the argument enough, if they can turn it into a draw, that
to them is a victory because it denies the other side a
victory.
Well Sean I, there is apparently two Dick Clarkes
here. Dick Clarke has been on three sides of a twosided
issue. He’s totally contradicted himself.
His statements are contradictory. But there is a lot of information that contradicts
Clarke and some.
But aren’t there sufficient contradictions. He has written a book. And he certainly
wants to go out there and promote that book. Is he just out to sell a book.
This is a fella who is out to sell his book.
Did he have a motive behind writing the book and going out on 60 Minutes and criticizing
the Bush Administration.
Obviously this guy’s hocking a book. Unveiling his book.
An appalling act of profiteering. This guy rakes Bush over the coals and gives
Clinton a pass. And the book gives Clinton a complete pass.
I’m struck by how easily Clarke treats the Bill Clinton era.
But there are still some real concerns about where
the truth lies in what Richard Clarke was saying.
They launched a major smear campaign. And in some ways it
worked,
I thought, number one, he was extremely melodramatic and he was intoning with great
pathos. I mean, I, it seemed, it almost seems like it
was a performance.
And it was just attack-politics on a TV channel. Usually
you leave attack-politics to a political campaign.
Carl Rove and Company are quite good at character assassination. You know they are all these
people, dozens of people in the White House paid for by you
and I. Paid for by our taxes, right, writing talking points,
calling up conservative columnists, calling up talk radio
hosts, telling them what to say. It’s interesting.
All the talk radio people, the right-wing talk radio people
all across the country, saying exactly the same thing.
Exactly the same words.
I noticed that. I was watching a 24 hour news network, and I’m sure it’s just a coincidence,
but they were saying, was remarkably similar to what
the White House was saying and I couldn’t help but thinking, “how funny
that was.”
We are bringing diversity of opinion. Ah, we are, there is diversity of opinion
on Fox News. You may disagree with that. We have many liberals
there, many liberals are invited, we have liberal commentators.
AS we have conservative ones.
Who are your liberal commentators? Alan Colmes for one.
Greta van Susteren. You know. It’s in the eye of the
beholder I guess.
What they’ll try to put on the appearance of being
balanced, but really kind of a mismatch. You’ll have a
Hannity And Colmes Show where Hannity is a really, a good-looking, kind of clean-cut
all-American kind of guy and, and his counterpart is a little squirrelly looking,
frankly. And you kind of say he’s the liberal? Well,
maybe he’s not so smart after all and it, and it, and it sends a subtle message, I think.
You’re a good Liberal. Good Liberal. Good Liberal.
A lot of the times the liberals that they get to appear on
are either, you know, faux-liberals, like, I would use
Susan Estrich as an example of that, a person who was
brought on, who essentially agrees with the person on the right in a lot
of cases. I am your biggest liberal friend. I do take
a little heat. People some times say to me,
“Do you really like Sean Hannity”.
What’s not to like? I thought I was Sean’s biggest liberal friend.
I love you all. Or they would just bring on people who were
very weak, you know, people who were not well-known people.
We can learn from history because if we don’t we’re condemned to repeat it.
You’re onto going to get the truth in a facts.
You’re going to get one guy, Clarke, accusing Bush saying,
“Clinton really” giving him a pass. Then you’re going to
get the Bush Administration attacking Clarke. You’re not
going to get the truth, Mary Ann. You weren’t there. You
don’t know. You’re probably right about that.
Even the people that are supposedly liberal in those panel discussions
they know that to challenge the guests and the other hosts
too forcefully, they’ll certainly find someone else to
stand in your place if that’s the case.
You’re spinning now. I’m not right-wing. I
believe in global warming.
We looked at “Special Reports” one-on-one interviews, their
once a day We studied 25 weeks of the one-on-one guest
who appeared on Special Report from late June through mid December of 2003.
Republicans appeared 5 times as often as Democrats on one-on-
one newsmakers interviews. That means that Republicans
made up 83% of the partisan guests while Democrats made up
just 17%. In addition the few Democrats that were interviewed for the show tended
to be centrists and conservative Democrats often brought on
to affirm Bush Administration policies. So what does this
all mean. Well if Fox were the bastion of fairness and
balance that it claims to be we’d see a lot more balance in
this prominent interview segment on the network’s most
prestigious show. Instead the numbers indicate that Brit
Hume and Special Report choose their guest based on
political considerations rather than news judgment.
That’s here, on the Fox News Channel. The Network
America trusts for Fair and Balanced News.
My criticism of Fox News isn’t that it’s a conservative
channel. It’s the consumer-fraud of ‘fair and balanced’.
It’s nothing of the sort.
Stories they Cover Stories they Ignore
You pitch a story in any given editorial meeting that didn’t meet the criteria that they
had explained to you, and you got a thumbs down.
When you have this Executive Vice President and those
around him, who are consistently saying, “no we’re not
gonna do that story, no this story’s bad, this story’s
good”, and it becomes very clear to all the Bureau Chiefs,
to everybody involved who have been there over a period of
years, there are certain kinds of stories, it’s not even
worth bringing up, there are other kinds of stories that
you know management’s gonna love.
Fox News Channel’s stated practice was to embarrass,
humiliate, challenge, or disrupt whatever Jesse Jackson did. We were told
on many occasions that he was one of our targets.
Anything we could do or say
that would embarrass him,
discredit him, we were encouraged to find the information
and we were encouraged to report the information.
I did a piece on immigration, and I thought it was poignant
to tell the stories of these people and all of the things that they had to go
through to get citizenship and how we take for granted how
really blessed we are, to be born with it. And the line that
I used in describing their efforts was, “folks seeking
citizenship earned, not born”, suggesting that hey they
really want citizenship because they’ve gotta go through
all these motions. Well, the Managing Editor was very
angry, says, “what have these people earned? They haven’t
earned a thing. They’re just here for a free ride,
they’re just here trying to take advantage of all of our,
freebies and, and”, I mean, it was just a, he just laid
waste to the idea that these people were hardworking.
It was very specifically said, we need to be fair to the
Bush Administration or to the Republicans than anybody else
in the media would be. But that was always there was
always understood a sort of a code for “lay off”.
I have firsthand knowledge of a reporter who was,
basically, yelled and screamed at by Executives because
because that reporter was asking tough questions of James
Baker at a news conference. It was a news conference that
was being carried live, and James Baker was saying, “we want to count every vote”
and the reporter was peppering with questions like, “well,
wait a second, if you want to count every vote, why not go
back and find the votes that were not counted because of
problems with the chad?” The reporters in New York thought
that this was a little too confrontational the style, never
mind that when Warren Christopher got up there for Gore,
the questions were equally tough, there were no
complaints about the questioning of Christopher, but
because the questions of James Baker were so tough
that reporter was pulled off the story and said, “we can't
trust you anymore, you didn’t handle this story very
well, go back to Washington.”
Ronald Reagan’s birthday was for Fox News Channel viewers,
something akin to a holy day. This was Ronald Reagan’s
birthday. So my assignment was to go to the Reagan
Presidential Library in Simi Valley California, and to do
live shots before dawn until dark. There weren’t very
many people at the Presidential Library
There wasn’t a celebration in any organized way going on.
You know there was a class of fourth graders who came to the library
that day to take the tour and they were lined up and they sang
happy birthday.
But that was pretty much the extent of the celebration.
They saw my first three or four live shots and Mr. Moody
called in to say
“What is he doing out there?” Apparently my live shots weren’t celebratory
enough.
And I was frankly at a bit of a loss as to what to say, or
do to make it seem like there was a big celebration.
Since dawn they’ve been streaming in from all over
the country and even parts of Canada and Mexico, admirers…
So I got in trouble for that one. I got in big trouble for
that one, in fact I was suspended.
What you will see, of course, is intensive discussion about
what we call “the wedge issues”. You’ll hear, you know,
Affirmative Action. You’ll hear Abortion. You’ll hear
certainly Gay Rights, God in, in Separation of Church and
State issues will be on television every single day.
I think this gay marriage thing is going to be an enormous
presidential issue. But there again, we have to be fair and balanced. We can’t run with
that.
The stampede of same sex couples to the altar has
accelerated.
President Bush says he’s ‘deeply troubled by the hundreds
of…
2000 same-sex couples…
2300 and counting that’s the number…
Same sex couples hoping to get married…
Same sex couples wanting to…
Same sex marriage.
Their job, which is what the right wing Republicans want to
do, is to divide America up, ignore the important economic
health care and environmental issues and they do that
extremely successfully.
They did start it up on gay marriage but I think that they
got sort of blindsided. They all of a sudden couldn’t show the usual footage they used
to show, because they used to love to show the footage, of
course, the parades and the black leather and, you know,
the drag queens. Then they had, you know, very kind
of normal looking, dumpy, middle age couples getting
married and smooching on the steps of City Hall. So I,
I’ve noticed a certain kind of zest going out of the gay
marriage thing. But that, the opposite, of where they’ve
picked up the slack, is on anything to do with religion,
anything to do with the 10 Commandments, anything to do with
God.
Why is Jesus so popular right now? Well I think it depends on
who you talk to. I think a lot of people would say that
one of the reason that he’s very popular is that Mel
Gibson’s movie has come out. George W Bush, because of all this, he wants
to see it, and I’m sure they’ll set up a special
screening at the White House.
Oh sure. He is a devout Christian. Apparently he prays daily.
” Did they think it’s about just a movie,
just entertainment, or do they think that there’s
something bigger at work?
Well I think they think there is something bigger at work. September
11th threatened
people and people looked to Jesus for comfort. But number
2, a line was drawn around the world between two kinds of
religions. Two kinds of societies.
Freedom is not this country’s gift to the world. Freedom is the Almighty’s gift
to every man and woman in this world.
Boy, couldn’t you see the elite media tremble over that one.
The President knows evoking the Deity will anger the
secular media – he doesn’t care. Talking points applauded.
They’re gonna push God very, very hard, particularly going
up into Bush’s re-election.
All of us, working together, can change American, on
soul at a time.
The Christian fundamentalist movement believes in “we’re
right, you’re wrong, no matter what.” And I saw a lot of that at
Fox, “we’re right, you’re wrong, no matter what.”
The O’Reilly factor is probably the perfect example of
everything that’s wrong with Fox news channel. They have stories that
are selected primarily to upset liberals and Democrats and
prop up Republican Party. You have a hostility towards
guests that disagree with the host and you have a host who
in service of his conservative politics will distort facts,
will misrepresent things, and will in some cases, just
fabricate.
In a personal story segment tonight we were surprised to
find out that an American who lost his father in the World
Trade Center attack had signed an anti-war advertisement that accused the US
itself of terrorism.
Jeremy Glick is the son of a Port Authority worker who died
in 9/11 and he had signed an anti-war petition and O’Reilly
had to have him on.
And they were so persistent about getting me on the
O’Reilly show, because they found out I was on the advisory
board and signed a statement that was against the war and
that I was directly impacted by 9/11. The
success that I had on the O’Reilly show had to do with
just practice and preparation. I taped the shows, and what
I did I took a stopwatch that I used for running sprints in
high school and I would see when he has a hostile guest
and I would time how long it takes for him to cut them off.
I was surprised and the reason I was surprised is
that this ad equate the United States with the terrorist.
I said “I’m shocked that you’re surprised.” And basically
just made the only point that I wanted to make.
Our current President now inherited a legacy from
his father, and inherited a political legacy that’s
responsible for training, militarily, economically and
situating geo-politically the parties involved in the
alleged assassination and murder of my father and countless
of thousand of others. So I don’t see why you think it’s
surprising for you to think that I would come back and want
to support ..
It is surprising and I’ll tell you why it’s surprising. You are mouthing a far-left position
that is a…
It was extremely intimidating sitting down in the studio because he’s really tall.
He lords over you.
You see. I’m sure your beliefs are sincere but
what upsets me is I don’t think your father would be
approving of this. Well my father thought that Bush’s presidency
was illegitimate.
Maybe he did but I don’t think he’d be equating
this country as a terrorist nation. Well I wasn’t saying it was necessarily
like that. Yes you were. You signed and it absolutely
said that.
Jeremy was pretty cool during it uh, and he was giving
his political views which were very to the left of
O’Reilly’s.
And he said, “I don’t really care what you think
politically.” I said, “Obviously you do care because A,
you brought me on your show and B, I’ve told him that he
uses 9/11 and sympathy with the 9/11 families and the lives
lost to rationalize his narrow right-wing agenda.
You evoke sympathy with the 9/11 families so…
That’s a bunch of crap. I’ve done more for the
9/11 families, by their own admission, I’ve done more for
them than you will ever hope to do. So you keep your mouth
shut when you say that I’m exploiting them… You don’t represent me.
And I’d never represent you, you know why? Because you have a warped view of this world
and this country.
Let me give you I don’t want to debate this with you.
Let me give you an example of parallel experience. September 14th.
Here’s a record. You didn’t support the action
against Afghanistan to remove the Taliban. You were
against it. Why would I want to brutalize and further
punish the people in Afghanistan?
Who killed your father. Who killed your father. The people in Afghanistan didn’t kill my
father. Sure they did. The people were trained there.
The people? What about the Afghans? I’m more angry about it than you are.
And what about George Bush? What about George Bush? He had nothing to
do with it.
The Director, Senior, as Director of the CIA. He had nothing to do with it.
So the person who trained 100,000 Muhad Jadine I hope your Mom isn’t watching this. I hope
your mother is not watching this.
It was unfair for O’Reilly to evoke both my mom and my father in the interview, especially
when I wasn’t. My mom is a grieving widow prematurely
for a violent, horrific turn in their lives. My
dad was only 55. They were working people, working class, middle
class. They were not retiring for a while and their
life is basically destroyed. Their life together is
destroyed and destroyed in circumstances that I wouldn’t
wish on my worst enemy, including Bill O’Reilly.
Because you. That’s it, I’m not going to say any
more. In respect for your father… September 14th. Do you want to know what I
was doing?
Shut up. Shut up. Please don’t tell me to shut up.
In respect for your father who was a port authority worker. A fine American who got
killed unnecessarily by barbarians.
By radical extremist who were trained by this government.
Respect for him. Not the people of America, the people, the
ruling class. The small minority.
Cut his mic. I’m not going to dress you down any
more. Out of respect for your father.
Are we done? We’re done.
You see him gesturing to security guards and then came the
after film performance.
After they were off the air, [ he said to the kid something to the affect,
“Get out of my studio before I f**king tear you to pieces!”
So Jeremy, and I’ve talked to him since, went, actually
went to the green room to get a cup of coffee.
And the executive producer and the assistant encouraged me
to leave the building because they were quote “concerned
that if O’Reilly ran into me in the hallway that he would
end up in jail”.
The next day…
This is our house here. If somebody comes to
your house and begins spitting on the floor, you’d remove
them. Glick was out of control and spewing hatred for this
program and his country using vile propaganda.
The next day I just turned on and watched the follow up and
saw my views totally distorted. Next thing I know was
saying Bush planned 9/11.
Glick was saying without a shred of evidence that
President Bush and Bush the Elder were directly responsible
for 9/11. Now that kind of stuff is not only loony, it’s
defamation.
That paints me as a fringe conspiracy nut.
This kid said nothing, nothing about President Bush and his father, Bush
the elder, orchestrating the attack on their own country.
So O’Reilly is just lying here.
He came on this program and accused President Bush of knowing about 9/11 and murdering his
own father.
Glick said, “Can I sue him?” And so I called the lawyer
who was in my case of, “Fox versus Dutton and Franken”, and
he says, “Well, the kid has to prove that O’Reilly knew he
was lying, and O’Reilly is so crazy, he lies so
pathologically, that’s it’s harder to prove that O’Reilly
knew he was lying.” So oddly enough, if someone has a
record of crazily lying it is harder to sue them
for defamation.
“Your plane is hijacked by terrorists.”
“You’re caught in a dirty bomb attack”
An anthrax vaccine for 25 million…
“you’re face-to-face with a suicide bomber”
: Don’t be inhaling. Don’t be ingesting.
Don’t be sucking particles into your body that could get the
radiation inside.
First your advice is Stay inside. Don’t drink or
eat anything…
Many of the themes that are emoted on the Fox News Channel
have to do with generating fear. Whether that’s fear of
immigration, a fear of racial difference.
When you pander to fear, it’s a great motivator and
organizer. You’ve got to keep people alarmed.
They really love this sense of fear and danger even when
it’s not there. And so when something is actually
dangerous, some things are, they go completely overboard
and all sense of perspective is lost. So that anthrax
which, I guess, affected four or five people, adversely, no question about
it, is far more dangerous that, you know, the poisoning of our air.
The way we deal with them is the way President Bush is dealing with them
You cordon the area, you search for them and you shoot
them.
Larry Johnson Former Fox News Contributor The motivator is fear and then the pay-off
is, you know, “we’re going to go out and kill the bad
guys.” And, you know, it’s a very simple black and white
world that they, ah, paint and portray.
Terrorism has become the all-purpose fear weapon because now everything
is converted into terrorism. And, of course,
if you have a constant sense of unease then you’re gonna look to the Government
to protect you. You’re gonna look to strong government.
We’ve removed from power enemies of this country. We
have made America more secure.
There are these enemies out there and it’s an ill-defined
enemy, but as long as we’re fighting them and killing them
and he’s looking presidential, then nothing else, again, is discussed.
What was interesting is in the climate of the Bush
Administration that much of that fear, the emotion was
purposefully misdirected by the right-wing, ah, into, ah,
the war in Iraq.
The type of coverage Fox offers and all of them offer but
Fox is probably the most pristine version is completely
consistent with Bush’s, um, with the strategy of the Bush
Administration. A, to, ah, prevent discussion of things
that are not going well, like, for instance, the economy or
the Medicare Bill.
There’s not doubt the war against Iraq, a country that did
not attack us, could only proceed based on fear.
Tonight It’s a special 2 hour block.
“War is my last choice…
But the risk of doing nothing is even a worse option as far as I’m concerned.
The President’s War on Terror. When will his military
plans get put into action.
No Spin on Iraq. Depend on “The Factor” for the trust
about the impending war with Iraq. We hope you depend on us for the truth, because
we’re going to report the situation in Iraq without an
agenda or any ideological prejudice.
That you gotta take what comes. Not that we hate
you Martin Sheen, but that we may not want to watch your
television Program anymore, because we’re identifying you with being
against what we believe in.
Once the war begins, I’ll consider those who actively
work against our military once war is underway to be enemies
of the state. Americans, and indeed our allies who actively
work against our military once the war is under way will be
considered enemies of the state by me.
But first, are the Americans, who went over the
Baghdad to act as human shields, well, are they more than
just protesters, are they traitors?
Harry Belafonte, he’s at it again, he says “the Bush Administration is possessed of
evil.” Has the “Calypso King” gone bonkers?
You have a right to say what you want, but we have a right not to buy your records.
Anyone who hurts this country at a time like this will be spotlighted.
Just fair warning to you Barbra Streisand and
others who see the world as you do. We don’t want to
demonize anyone but anyone who hurts this country in a time
like this, well, let’s just say you will be spotlighted.
Certainly television, and perhaps to an extent, my station, was intimidated by the administration
and its foot soldiers at Fox News. And it did in fact,
put a climate of fear and self-censorship, in my
view, in terms of, of, of the kind of broadcast work we did.
Bob McChesney Founder of Free Press/Author of
“The Problem of the Media” First rule of being a great propaganda system
and why our system is vastly superior to anything in the
old Soviet Union, is not that people think they’re
being subject to propaganda. If people don’t think that,
they aren’t looking for that, they’re much easier to
propagandize. And that’s the genius of our media system; a
system of ideology, of control compared to an authoritarian
system.
Look we’re making good progress in Iraq. Sometimes
it’s hard to tell it when you listen to the filter.
Tremendous progress in Iraq. The kids are back at school, 10% more than when Saddam
Hussein was there. There’s 100% more fresh water.
It’s a fresh start for Iraqi athletes. So far 2500 schools have been renovated.
Are Iraquis better off than they were a year ago?
Yes they are definitely better off. And these brave athletes look forward to making
Olympic gold.
There are so many positive developments.
Fox has made a decision to present the Iraq war as a
success and as an ongoing success. Fox Report Iraqis get a welcome diversion
at the race track