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Did Steve Doocy Lie Or Just Misspeak When He Introduced “Fair and Balanced Debate Look” About Textbook?

Reported by Priscilla - April 20, 2009 -

When Steve Doocy introduced the weekly “trouble with textbooks” segment (April 15th) as a “fair and balanced debate, look about how our economic past is portrayed in your kids books,” I got excited thinking that perhaps there would be a counterpoint to the months of right wing propaganda that Fox&Friends have presented regarding textbooks used in American schools. I thought that perhaps, finally, there would be a non conservative historian (no, not even Howard Zinn; but somebody on the level of Doris Kearns Goodwin or Michael Beschloss). I wondered if perhaps, finally, there would be a representative from a publishing company who would defend the material in one of the many maligned texts. I had the vain hope that perhaps there could be a discussion with some real history teachers or school board members regarding the materials that they use and choose. I shouldn’t have raised my expectations because as Steve Doocy (not an educator) was speaking, the chyron read, “liberal lies, debunking myths about America’s past.” In Doocy’s case, “you don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows,” and on Fox&Friends it blows to the right and it blows hard!

The featured speaker was Burton Folsom, a history professor at Hillsdale College, who has recently written a book which claims that the New Deal was really a raw deal – a right wing meme that was making the rounds recently and which has been refuted by an number of scholars and economists. (here and here). While it’s the professor’s right to formulate a view about history, it’s also the responsibility of Fox, in a “fair and balanced” format, to provide some refutation – but you didn’t see that on this segment which was billed as “fair and balanced.” And while Fox brays about the right wing partisanship of liberal academia, there would never be conservative partisanship on the part of the Fox News guests, would there? The answer to that is a resounding yes! The tedious Professor Larry Schweikart was a Christian conservative to the core. (BTW, on his last appearance on Fox, he was standing before a solid blue backdrop without any signage about the University of Dayton. Hmmm.) The gentleman whom Doocy interviewed earlier this month was from a very conservative book review group which promotes anti evolution and other juicy right wing jive. So let’s take a look at Burton Folsom. He teaches at Hillsdale College which is described as a “citadel of conservatism.” But perhaps Mr. Folsom doesn’t really have an agenda? Well, he was a former member of the associate of the Mackinac Center for Public Policy described by Source Watch as the “largest conservative state-level policy think tank in the nation.” He was also connected with the Foundation for Economic Education which, according to Source Watch, is more libertarian but definitely very free market. But Fox does love the message that Folsom preaches because he was a guest on Glenn Beck’s show during which he pushed his propaganda. Despite Doocy’s promise, Dr. Folsom was the only guest who wasn’t debated by “Mr. Happy.”

Comment: A “fair and balanced debate, look..?” On what planet?????