Everything the right-wing does is designed to accomplish one of two things. Either
(a) transfer wealth from everyone else to the rich, or
(b) distract everyone else from the fact that (a) is occurring.
I was just listening to a progressive talk show podcast and heard a caller say that he watched Fox News during the Health Care debates on Sunday. He noticed how Fox News decided to replay a Mitch McConnell speech when the man President Obama calls the dean of health care reform, Rep. Dingell, was about to make his speech.
Fox news has made it a practice from early on, to show their viewers ONLY what they want them to see and absorb, taking a page from the Goebbels playbook on propaganda and expanding it exponentially. They repeat a certain scene or comment over and over until their brain dead or dumbed down audience starts regurgitating the same message on talk shows, rallies and blogs.
As mentioned above, another tactic is to CENSOR. Censorship for the sake of ‘staying on message’ in my mind, is propaganda.
Thanks to Ronald Regan, the right-wing messiah, who totally, and it seems irrevocably destroyed the Fairness Doctrine, stations like Fox News can say whatever they want and never have a balanced opposite opinion, as required by law once. They can lie with impunity, which they do, without the FCC or any other regulatory “on air” group scrutinizing what they say.
That folks, was taken away by the right wing patron saint, Ronald Regan.
According to Steve Rendall of the media criticism group Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting,
“ The Fairness Doctrine had two basic elements: It required broadcasters to devote some of their airtime to discussing controversial matters of public interest, and to air contrasting views regarding those matters. Stations were given wide latitude as to how to provide contrasting views: It could be done through news segments, public affairs shows, or editorials. The doctrine did not require equal time for opposing views but required that contrasting viewpoints be presented.
Under FCC Chairman Mark S. Fowler, a communications attorney who had served on Ronald Reagan‘s presidential campaign staff in 1976 and 1980, was appointed by Reagan to head the FCC. The commission began to repeal parts of the Fairness Doctrine, announcing in 1985 that the doctrine hurt the public interest and violated free speech rights guaranteed by the First Amendment.
On February 16, 2009, Fowler told conservative radio talk-show host Mark Levin that his work toward revoking the Fairness Doctrine under the Reagan Administration had been a matter of principle (his belief that the Doctrine impinged upon the First Amendment), not partisanship. Fowler described the White House staff raising concerns, at a time before the prominence of conservative talk radio and during the preeminence of the Big Three television networks and PBS in political discourse, that repealing the policy would be politically unwise. He described the staff’s position as saying to Reagan:
“ The only thing that really protects you from the savageness of the three networks — every day they would savage Ronald Reagan — is the Fairness Doctrine, and Fowler is proposing to repeal it! ”
Instead, Reagan supported the effort and later vetoed the Democratic-controlled Congress’s effort to make the doctrine law.
…but I digress…
Fox News Makes A ‘Big F—ing Deal’ Out Of Biden’s Private Remark At Bill Signing Ceremony
Immediately after President Obama signed the health care reform legislation, Fox News’ Trace Gallagher brought up the “news,” saying that it was crossing their “urgent wires.” “We’ll play that for you if we can,” he promised. Bret Baier called Biden’s comment “striking”:
GALLAGHER: We also had crossing the urgent wires…the possibility that Vice President Joe Biden might have slipped up and dropped an f-bomb when he was addressing the President. […]
I want to add some more context about what I was saying about the comment that Vice President Joe Biden made to the President and it says here, in our urgent queue, that when he was hugging the President, he leaned over and said, “This is a big bleeping deal.” We’ll play that for you if we can. […]
BAIER: It was pretty striking for Vice President Biden to turn to the President and say, “This is a big blanking deal,” using the f-word with the microphones picking it up, and I’m sure we’ll take about that later.
Of course, Fox is eager to find a source of distraction to avoid covering the substance of the health care policy. Over the course of the year-long health care debate, Fox propagated baseless stories about “death panels,” fears about a “government takeover,” and claims that health care being “unconstitutional.”
Update: White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs tweets, “And yes Mr. Vice President, you’re right…”
Jon Stewart expresses my same sentiments in this video compilation.