Triumph of the Shill

Shocking, Even for Fox

Fox News has now skipped ahead to out-and-out attack advertising.

Go here and watch the video inside this post at Hot Air, a conservative site. It's a "news segment" from Fox & Friends that assesses Obama's first four years in office. Really astonishing.

It's a campaign attack ad. It has the sturm und drang music and the fast editing cuts and the visuals dwelling on things like number of jobs lost and so forth. It is a commercial.

Fox evidently pulled it, but this does raise the question of how far they'll go this fall. After all, some number of people in the news division spent a heck of a lot of time putting this thing together. Counting employees' hours, thousands of dollars went into this piece of genuine propaganda, and very serious editing work, and then it actually went up on the air before they pulled the thing.So this was a trial balloon, a test. They'll now reel it back in, do things less un-subtle than this, things not quite so obviously Riefenstahlian and see what they can get away with.

By the way, we didn't discuss that survey a couple of weeks ago that found that Fox viewers are the stupidest people in the country. Okay, that's a slight exaggeration. They're the least informed news consumers in America. Literally less informed than people who watch no news at all. Breathe that sentence in. Less informed than people who don't even watch the stinking news. And who was most informed?

Ha! NPR listeners. I guess this just proves that reality does have a liberal bias. Anyway--it's also remarkable if you stop and think about Fox's role in this election. It's just a conduit for the Romney campaign to reach the public, and indeed for Romney himself. Romney basically only appears on Fox. Gee, he's gonna get the tough questions there, right? Actually, I think Shepard Smith did once ask him a tough question, why is why Romney has largely switched to Hannity, whose questions tend toward the exactly-how-much-do-you-love-freedom variety. The mere existence of this outfit is a national scandal.

UPDATE: A Fox spokesperson emailed along the following: “The package that aired on FOX & Friends was created by an associate producer and was not authorized at the senior executive level of the network. This has been addressed with the show’s producers.”–Bill Shine, Executive Vice President of Programming, FOX News Channel