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Grape Picking On Fox’s Political Grapevine

Reported by Priscilla - April 24, 2008 -

“Cherry picking” is defined as “the act of pointing at individual cases or data that seem to confirm a particular position, while ignoring a significant portion of related cases or data that may contradict that position”. The “Political Grapevine” on Fox’s Special Report is a piece which features short “reports” on various topics related to politics. While some are innocuous, others are meant to convey a Fox/rightwing talking point. Last night’s (April 23rd) Special Report contained a report that, while concise, wasn’t really the whole story; thus, rather than cherries, we have some grape picking happening here

Hume, during “the Grapevine,” reported that Iraq war pimp architect, Douglas Feith, is not being “invited back” to Georgetown University where he had a two year contract at the foreign service school despite his having “really good” course evaluations according to Robert Gallucci, the dean of the foreign service school. Hume said that Feith’s hiring had “caused an uproar” at the school and that Feith told students that he was terminated because “faculty did not want him there.” Hume then added that “one of those students tells FOX News that almost all of his classmates signed a letter to the dean protesting Feith's departure. So far there has been no response.”

Hume did not report that there were some students from Georgetown who, on April 18th, protested a lecture given by Feith, “due to his alleged support for interrogation techniques that some have deemed to be torture.” Two out of the three letters accompanying this Hoya report were very critical of Feith who, was described by General Tommy Franks as “the stupidist, f*#king guy on the planet.” Hume certainly did not quote from an editiorial in the Georgetown Voice which stated prior to Feith’s termination: “It’s too late an hour to see Feith off; we can only hope that the school will not renew his contract. Feith can take his salary, and the further thousands he will no doubt earn from his memoir, and try to justify his failures somewhere else. But Georgetown is supposed to have a code, one that emphasizes both intellectual and moral rigor, and, in the case of a practitioner, practical success of some kind. We should not reward those who do not meet that standard by associating them with our good reputation. After all, our name is our name.”

So, the viewer of the “Grapevine” is left with the impression that poor Doug Feith is being victimized by the Georgtown faculty, based on Feith’s word. While the university has not given any official reason for the termination, it is quite possible that his presence at the university was problematic. As such, it might have behooved Hume to actually have mentioned why this would be so. But that is not the intent of the “Grapevine” which does not seek to inform beyond the talking point that is conveyed. Hume’s “grapes” are the ingredients of a cheap “whine.”