I’m sure I’ve mentioned before that my wife used to force me to watch Fox News. Not because she liked it, but because she’s drawn to things that annoy her, and wants to share them with me. I get it, but it was just way too much for me sometimes. It wasn’t even just the racism, sexism, classism, and blatant lies; it was also the fact that everyone was constantly bending over backwards to talk about how great the network was. Dude, you don’t need to spend that much time on advertising what people are already watching. I get the impression that part of why they fired Glenn Beck was that he wasn’t kissing network ass enough, instead just talking up his own sponsors. There was a commercial they played a lot saying that Bill O’Reilly “dominates cable news.” When I hear the word “dominate,” I don’t think of good ratings, but of either a dog humping other dogs to keep them in line or a woman in leather with a whip.
I think I remember O’Reilly claiming that his show getting the highest ratings made it objectively better, and this was at a time when Two and a Half Men was the highest-rated show on television. And while media personalities in general tend to be smug, the Fox News anchors take it to a new level. I’ve heard a rumor that the whole reason they use the slogan “fair and balanced” when it’s painfully obvious they aren’t was just to piss off liberals. It’s a pretty stupid slogan anyway. Everyone is biased; the important thing is to be aware of that bias.
Also, you know what? You can’t brag about your ratings AND claim not to be part of the mainstream media. Maybe you SHOULDN’T be mainstream, but you ARE. Not to mention that the so-called liberal media have recently been giving Donald Trump as much publicity as humanly possible.
Recently, O’Reilly’s tendency to just dig in deeper when he’s wrong about something has been in the news again. I wrote before about the time years ago when he insisted you couldn’t explain how the tides worked without God, and when told it was (duh) the Moon, his response was basically, “So where did the Moon come from?” Yeah, I don’t think that’s relevant, Bill. When you’ve been publicly called out for being wrong by a significant number of people, it seems like the best option would be to apologize; or if you’re absolutely sure you’re right, find some evidence to support your position. Or you can just hope people forget, which admittedly O’Reilly has done on occasion, as with that time he sexually harassed an employee and then paid her off to keep her quiet. Presumably the allegations that he dragged his wife around by the neck fit into that same category. I guess Trump isn’t the only guy who can shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and it won’t affect their popularity. Actually, it probably DID affect his popularity to an extent, but not with the hardcore fans who think anyone they agree with who sounds authoritative must be right. Admitting you were wrong is something those wishy-washy liberals do!
I have to wonder if the accusations of sexual harassment against Roger Ailes are going to result in any backlash from the viewers, or if they just think the whole thing is a left-wing conspiracy. Not that they’d likely think sexually harassing employees is all that bad anyway. With the constant sexism on display there, I’m not at all surprised by the accusations. What does get me, if the allegations are true, is how blatant Ailes apparently was about it. It’s like, of COURSE female employees are expected to have sex with him! It just goes without saying, doesn’t it?
“Hey, baby, like my Churchill jowls? You owe so much to so few!”
Anyway, O’Reilly recently commented on Michelle Obama’s remark about slaves having built the White House, and his argument was that these slaves were relatively well-treated.
And…what’s the point of saying this? It’s still slavery! Yes, not all slaves were treated equally badly, but when the nation has decided they’re property, that’s pretty much a moot point. Not to mention that it likely sounds even worse coming from a rich white guy. Then again, this is from a guy who thinks white privilege doesn’t exist and generalizing black people as “ill-educated” with “tattoos on their foreheads” is okay, white people becoming a minority in the United States is terrifying, and pointing out that nobody at Sylvia’s in Harlem asked for “more iced tea, M-F-er” is a compliment.
But when people called him out on this, he claimed it was some sort of organized left-wing attack, because apparently only ultra-liberal radicals think slavery was wrong. Then he and his guests complained about the stigma attached to Fox News. Gee, you don’t think making offensive comments and then doubling down on them has anything to do with that, do you? And while it’s certainly not right to physically assault anyone, you’d think Geraldo would be used to being hit with things by now.