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Stock Market Retreat from Record High Blamed on Al Qaeda

Reported by Marie Therese - October 3, 2006 -

Poor Brenda Buttner! Each week on Bulls & Bears she puts her heart and soul into turning GOP talking points into "questions", hoping against hope that one day the cadre of FOX financial analysts will actually agree with her. The situation was no different on Saturday's edition of the show (September 30, 2006). Dutifully she dredged up another dumb question, ending it with what Jon Stewart describes as "the cavuto", i.e., a question mark designed to prevent FNC from being sued and/or laughed out of town. In her patented hyper-active, unmodulated and hard-edged style, she asked:

"Did Al Qaeda prevent the Dow from closing at a new all-time high?"

She continued: "The Dow, nearing a close that would have marked an all-time high but late Friday Al Qaeda's second in command released a tape threatening another holy war. Stocks retreat and that high? Out of reach! Toby, Wall Street still spooked by these guys?"

Her five guests - Tobin Smith, Gary B. Smith, Rob Stein, Bob Oldstein and Scott Bleier - all answered in the negative, agreeing that Ayman al Zawahiri's pathetic threats had nothing to do with the market's retreat from a record high. However, Buttner, a very persistent foot soldier, ignored her initial rebuff by the panel and asked her question in a slightly different way.

BUTTNER: "But it's not a game. I mean, you talk about this electronic trading and all the rest. I mean but you're saying basically that this war on terror and the whole issue of, of, of whether or not there are attacks overseas, whether or not this man is saying 'We're gonna go - there's a holy war, we're taking on the President, we're taking on the Pope' has nothing to do with the economy and the stock market?"

Tobin Smith of ChangeWave Investing spoke for everyone when he argued that a small group of extreme religious fanatics cannot stop a $13 trillion economy. Defeated, Buttner ended the segment.

However, FOX News made sure that the Bush administration's talking point was prominently displayed in the lower chyron throughout the entire discussion sans "cavuto" mark:

DOW'S RALLY TO ALL-TIME HIGH HALTED BY NEW AL QAEDA TAPE

Maybe they hoped that a few of their viewers would remember not what was said, but what was written.