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The Real Business for Forbes on Fox is Bush's Re-election

Reported by Ellen - July 25, 2004 -

I hope nobody out there watches Forbes on Fox with the aim of learning about business, the economy or investments. If so, you'll have to listen carefully in order to catch any real news or information in-between the political punditry. The true bottom line here is that Steve Forbes, David Asman and Fox News Channel use this show as a vehicle for Bush's election.

On the 7/24/04 program, Forbes reminded us three times in less than 10 minutes how important it is to elect Bush.

11:04 am: Forbes: Bush gets elected? The market goes up. Kerry gets elected? Market goes down.

The TV screen says: Market's set for a big move! But in which direction? (Hmm, wonder what they're getting at?)

11:07 am: Forbes, interrupting guest Victoria Murphy who was actually analyzing two companies whose financials were up but stock prices down: "Get to the point! If Kerry wins, the market goes into the john because he's going to be bad for the economy."

11:11 am: Forbes: Push Bush, bury Kerry if you want a good stock market.

Nobody made the same kind of pro-kerry pronouncements.

Perhaps because of the heat from Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism, the second half of this segment had on the screen "Victory for John Kerry's a victory for Wall Street!" As one of the Forbes on Fox monitors for the film, I can vouch for the fact that Forbes on Fox was almost entirely all pro-Bush, all the time and that this graphic represents something of a departure from their previous practice. But despite what the screen said, the discussion made it clear that the viewer should think otherwise.

11:15 am: Host David Asman made this "fair and balanced" observation in response to a comment by Senior Editor Elizabeth MacDonald: "So all of the benefits in terms of raising taxes, in terms of money coming in to the Treasury would be wiped out on the spending programs, as Elizabeth says, on health care?" In fact, she said nothing of the sort. What she actually said was that Kerry would allow drug imports from Canada but had no plan to address the liabilities of Social Security or Medicare. But no one challenged Asman's statement.

Comment: There were opposing views to Forbes and Asman. But they were outnumbered by pro-Bush views. And when the host and the editor-in-chief of the show's namesake are so unabashedly pro-Bush, that sends a very clear, unmistakeable and unbalanced message to the viewer.