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“Grapevine” Wants Late Night TV Humor To Be Fair And Balanced – Now That’s Funny!

Reported by Priscilla - October 20, 2008 -

On Friday night’s “Grapevine” (October 17th), the unfunny Bret Baier teased the “Grapevine” segment with this Cavuto marked comment: “Not-so-Funny Business With Late-Night Political Humor?” According to the chyron, for the segment, there is another “agenda” at work. No, not the liberal or gay agenda; but the newest threat to American culture is the “late night agenda?” (another Cavuto mark?) Looks like “some people” at Fox don’t have a sense of humor!

Baier began the piece by stating that “a new study reveals late-night comics are not fair and balanced when it comes to the election — not really a shocker.” He then cited stats from the “non partisan Center for Media and Public Affairs” (which is a questionable description seeing that this Center has been funded by the Olin’s and Scaife’s) that “David Letterman and Jay Leno are skewering the Republican candidates seven times more than the Democrats.” Baier had the numbers: "The group says that during the five weeks after John McCain picked Sarah Palin as his running mate, Leno and Letterman picked on McCain and Palin 286 times, but told just 42 jokes about Barack Obama and Joe Biden. There were 106 McCain jokes and a whopping 180 about Palin. Obama was targeted 26 times, and Joe Biden just 16 times, less than one-tenth the number of jokes about Palin."

Comment: Fox and its right wing cronies don’t want a fairness doctrine so boo, freaking, hoo. If they want more conservative humor, then let them do a comedy show – oh, I forgot, they did and it was a flop. Could it be that there’s lot more to lampoon with the Republican ticket? (wink, wink). The late night TV comics regularly lampooned Bill Clinton, and I’m sure Fox didn’t have a problem with that. But as I say, nobody is stopping the conservatives from doing their own humor which, if Ann Coulter is any example, is decidedly homicidal (somebody should poison Supreme Court Justice Steven’s crème brulee) – humor that Fox found acceptable as there wasn’t the clamor about that remark as there was about Whoppi Goldberg’s joke about “Bush” which caused her to be dropped from an ad campaign. Right wing humor is decidedly “schadenfreude” and that really doesn’t play well with late night TV audiences. ( We do have to thank Rush Limbaugh for his vulgar imitation of Michael Fox which led to a Democratic senate seat in Missouri!) But humor requires a sense of irony and some intellectual dexterity and neither of these characteristics are present in the rigid black and white world of the right wing. And the true irony in this “Grapevine” piece is that Fox News is complaining about a lack of fairness. As Amy Poehler and Seth Meyers say in that SNL “news” sketch – “oh, reallllly.” Fox wants “fair and balanced” humor. LOL!!!!