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Greenwald Skewers Fox, MacCallum on News Memo

Reported by Judy - November 15, 2006 -

The producer of the Outfoxed documentary that helped start a cottage industry making fun of Fox News Channel took the channel to task Wednesday (Nov. 15, 2006) for fixing the news around its own propaganda aims and called on Rupert Murdoch to fire the author of a controversial leaked memo.

Robert Greenwald appeared on MSNBC's "Countdown" with Keith Olbermann to discuss the internal memo from Fox News' senior vice president for news obtained by Huffington Post. The memo from Nov. 9, 2006, instructed Fox News' "journalists" to "be on the lookout for any statements from the Iraqi insurgents ...thrilled at the prospect of a Dem controlled Congress."

By itself, the memo was damning enough, but coincidentally, later that same day, Martha MacCallum on the "Live Desk" followed her boss's instructions on what the news would be, to a tee. She stated, without any evidence or pointing to any specific examples, that there were
"some reports of cheering in the streets on the behalf of the supporters of the insurgency in Iraq, that they’re very pleased with the way things are going here and also with the resignation of Donald Rumsfeld."

News Hounds reported on that earlier.

In his report on Wednesday, Olbermann noted the MacCallum quotation and attributed it to www.newshounds.us via Columbia Journalism Review. I also discussed the MacCallum incident Wednesday morning during an interview on The Young Turks radio show.

Similar memos were uncovered during the filming of Outfoxed but Greenwald said the one published Wednesday crossed the line. "If they were journalists, they would be ashamed, but they're not," he said.

Greenwald and Olbermann both did their usual outstanding jobs.