Friday, September 17, 2004

The Advocate : Film aims to 'outfox' news network

Following Michael Moore's politically charged and popular Fahrenheit 9/11, Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War On Journalism, argues that the Fox News network isn't the "fair and balanced" news source it claims to be. Instead, the movie says, Fox News is little more than a propaganda tool for right-wing extremists and the Republican-controlled White House.

Filmmaker Robert Greenwald makes his case largely through a parade of talking heads, many of them identified as ex-Fox News reporters, producers and commentators. The film's also streaming with Fox News broadcasts, including blustery Bill O'Reilly's O'Reilly Factor; many Fox anchors and reporters; Sean Hannity, co-host of Hannity & Colmes, the Fox program billed as the No. 1 nightly debate program; and Fox founder and media mogul Rupert Murdoch himself.

"Murdoch doesn't believe in objectivity," says David Brock, author of Right-Wing Media and How It Corrupts Democracy. "He wants all news to be opinion."

Sean Hannity, for one, gleefully announces: "Just 263 days until you get to cast your vote and decide that George W. Bush deserves a second term!"

Greenwald follows footage of Bill O'Reilly saying he has told someone to shut up only once with a dozen or so clips of O'Reilly telling people to shut up. There's also footage of O'Reilly and other Fox News people stopping guests in their verbal tracks.

"Quiet!" an angry O'Reilly tells one guest. "Cut his mike!" he adds with a slashing motion of his index finger. And a female anchor tells comedian George Carlin, "I'm sorry to cut you off, but my religion didn't teach me that, but thank you for being here."

"It's a right-wing network," Carlin snaps back, "and you don't want to hear this stuff."

(click on the title for the whole article)


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