Thursday, February 24, 2011

Fox Tries To Shoot The Messenger

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker got into some trouble by falling victim to a prank call (more on that in a later post), in which he divulged deceptive strategies and a willingness to take bribes from billionaires, but it is the media's response to this prank call that I found interesting, more so the subsequent responses from Fox News.

In a Thursday article on Fox Nation, there is reference made to a Daily Caller article by Matthew Boyle, attacking the prankster, editor for online newspaper The Beast, Ian Murphy, calling the newspaper editor a blogger (that only seems to be an insult when you oppose a conservative view point) and referencing past articles with such inflamatory titles as "Fuck The Troops" in an attempt to discredit the contents of the call.

Boyle wrote the following:
The Buffalo Beast blogger who prank-called Wisconsin Republican Gov. Scott Walker, falsely posing as billionaire David Koch, has written some edgy — some may say offensive — articles in the past. For the publication he edits, Ian Murphy has written such pieces as “Fuck The Troops,” a dissertation explaining why he thinks, “the nearly two-thirds of us who know this war is bullshit need to stop sucking off the troops,” and “Let There Be Retards,” an exclusive look inside a Kentucky creationism museum – while Murphy was falsely pretending to have Asperger’s Syndrome.

The Walker storyline has blown up on the left-wing blogosphere, and several mainstream publications like the Washington Post, NPR and USA Today have run with stories on the prank call as well. Most mainstream publications that have published articles about the prank call have left out mention of Murphy’s journalistic past.
It is interesting that Boyle would call into question Murphy's "journalistic past" when people like Boyle have come to the defense of pretend journalists like Lila Rose and James O'Keefe - in a February 22nd article by Kristan Hawkins on the Daily Caller, which by the way is also an online publication, Hawkins called for the defunding of Planned Parenthood because of the revelations from Rose's highly edited smear videos.
While it would be illegal for Planned Parenthood to pay for abortions with federal taxpayer money, believe me — our money is still propping up this abortion giant. It’s an interesting bookkeeping game, as our taxpayer money pays for Planned Parenthood’s staff, facilities, and equipment — just not the actual abortion procedures.

In the past decade, Students for Life and other activists like Lila Rose, President of Live Action and a former SFLA intern, have worked to prove to Americans that Planned Parenthood should not receive our money to kill and wound over 300,000 preborn children and women each year.
While Murphy's past is called into question by those on the right, the pasts of conservative activists are not.

Websites like The Daily Caller have an agenda, and they don't try to hide it. 

"Defunding Planned Parenthood is at the top of our list as pro-lifers," wrote Hawkins.  "For if we can defeat this organization, we will be able to bring down the largest abortion provider in America, stop Planned Parenthood’s preying on young women, and save hundreds of thousands of preborn lives."

What makes this worse is Fox, which claims to be fair and balanced, cites these highly biased sources as a way of presenting fair "news," while at the same time attacking the "mainstream media" for not reporting on the same, unprofessional, unethical, opinionated stories.  By the way - those stories also attack the mainstream media.  Just look at Boyle's comments about "mainstream publications" ignoring Ian Murphy's other works.


  1. The hypocrisy of Fox and their viewers is well documented. This doesn't surprise me. The alternative would be to question the motives of a GOP Governor...heaven forbid...this is Fox, defender of all the insanity cooked up by the Kochs and Ailes, while pretending to support the people. I want to hear from Fox the truth about these protestors: they pay for ALL their own health care and retirement, through accepting a lower salary during theri working years, and what the Governor is asking them for is a huge PAY CUT...they can't pay for 5% of their health care and 12% of their retirement because they are already paying for them! The real issue is the bargaining rights...he and the right hate unions, so the time is ripe to bust them under the guise of a budget crisis. Never mind that he created it himself. I hate what Fox is doing to this nation. Foxnation indeed....we won't want to live there.

  2. I was both surprised and satisfied with the concessions from the unions. I am not the biggest fan of unions but understand their purpose and their role, for not every business has the interests of their employees in mind - including government.

    I also think it is interesting how the right has been targeting professions like prison guards, firefighters, and teachers. I don't know of many people who enter into these professions for the pay and benefits.

    My father became a juvenile detention center officer later in life, in part because it was something he was interested in doing and because he believed he could make a difference in those peoples lives. Same goes for my teacher friends. I rarely hear them talk about ripping off taxpayers... oh wait... those are the words Fox put in their mouths...

  3. Also... just made an observation in the post above - in particular the citations.

    When Boyle attacked Murphy's past works, including one where he "falsely pretended" to be a person with Asperger's Syndrome in a creationism museum, it made me scratch my head.

    How does one falsely pretend?

    Is that like a double negative?

    Logically, would that mean that since people like Lila Rose and Hannah Giles entered into ACORN and Planned Parenthood offices pretending to be prostitutes, does that mean both Rose and Giles, who were falsely pretending, are really whores?

    It is also very hypocritical to attack one person (Murphy) for falsely pretending but not the other (Rose, Giles, O'Keefe, etc.)...

  4. It comes as exactly zero surprise that the moment Murphy released the audio recording of his phone call, the hounds would be hot on the trail of any lead to discredit him. I've heard righties compare him to Breitbart in an attempt to smear him, not getting the irony that they earlier had upheld Breitbart as the journalistic equivalent of Woodward and Bernstein.

    And they also don't understand that you cannot equate one person editing hours of audio and video down to a few minutes of selective (and deceptive) snippets with another releasing a complete, 45-minute, unedited phone call. Even if what Scott Walker said was only a mild indictment (I really am NOT seeing a huge illegal conspiracy to send imposters into the crowd; merely the "thought" had crossed his mind), Murphy leaves it up to us to decide what Walker said. He gives full context.

    (I don't think the indictment is mild with respect to Walker's true intentions of burying the union(s) as opposed to his contention that this is a budgetary issue.)


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