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FNL Treats Alleged "Rumor" Just Like "Hard News"

Reported by Nancy - October 17, 2005 -

Today (10/17) on FNL, watching the noon hour anchored by Bill Hemmer was like watching the program as it was under David Asman -- a mishmash of mini-blurbs, opinions, fluff, ALERTs for eye candy, a couple of snippets (& I do mean snippets) of actual news, plus teasers for interviews that never happened. The overwhelming "theme" (if you can call it that) for the hour, however, was Senator Hillary Clinton, accompanied by the requisite liberal- & Hollywood-bashing. FNL has now officially jumped on the "Hysterical About Hillary" bandwagon that Fox has started. Rather than hype recent books by Susan Estrich & Dick Morris, however, FNL chose to attack with rumors about the TV program "Commander in Chief" & scraped the bottom of the barrel by asking for an opinion of the program from a guest who admitted she'd never seen it.

Here are the segments related to HClinton:

12:15pm - Hemmer mentioned the TV program "Commander in Chief" & asked "Is there any truth to this talk about how some believe" it's helping HClinton to run for POTUS in 2008

12:19pm - teasers included: CRice "on the record about 2008"

12:39ppm - teasers included: "Commander in Chief" setting the stage for HClinton

12:46pm - teasers included: HClinton

12:50pm - Hemmer showed a clip of Chris Wallace interviewing Secy of State Condoleeza Rice on Fox News Sunday, then interview Georgette Mossbacher (GOP) & Geraldine Ferraro (Dem) about "Commander in Chief" being a "precursor" for a HClinton presidency. Ferraro laughed the rumor off & tried to emphasize the positive aspects of having powerful role models for little girls. She also said she'd like to see women candidates from both major parties. Mossbacher, on the other hand, did yeoman's duty, spouting GOP talking points with nearly every phrase:
*she said this is "Hollywood's Manchurian candidate strategy" & the "propaganda technique"
*she was "suprised they didn't cast Barbara Streisand or Jane Fonda in the part"
*she warned that "we have to be suspect of Hollywood"
*she said "Let's face it, Hollywood is liberal"
*her final shot was: "typical liberal message from Hollywood"

Bonus: Just before the end of the interview, Mossbacher admitted she has never seen the program.

Comments: Maybe I'm just not up-tp-date on the most current reactionary fear-mongering, but I hadn't heard this alleged "rumor" until FNL started pretending it was actual news. The only FACT in all of this is that there's a TV program called "Commander in Chief" with a plotline about a woman as POTUS. Everything else is rumor, speculation & opinion. As far as opinion is concerned, Ferraro actually offered opinions. Mossbacher simply regurgitated the same tired old talking points. Frankly, anyone with a functional brain could have predicted Mossbacher's tactics, but I'll bet FoxFans lapped it up because it confirms what they already believe. A couple more question: why ask someone who has never seen a particular program to offer an analysis/opinion of it? Would you trust a movie review by a critic who hadn't seen the movie?

NOTE TO READERS: Please stay on topic (FNL's & FNC's obsessions with Hillary Clinton). O/T comments will be deleted. Thanks.