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Martha MacCallum, Major Garrett . . . What's Truth Got To Do With It?

Reported by Julie - November 4, 2009 -

I can just hear the behind-the-scenes Fox News misinformation-promoting talking heads now.

“Hey, guys, we just heard a nasty rumor about President Obama. Get in on the air, now! Quick, quick, quick, like little bunnies, before the real media gets the real facts and debunks our rumor and we miss our chance to smear him! Don’t waste time on fact-checking, we can always go with the ‘honest mistake’ routine later. Chop, chop, time’s a-wastin’!”

And so it goes . . . as reported by the Christian Science Monitor, Fox News in the form of Martha MacCallum reported a story today about the President watching a documentary about his campaign instead of the election returns last night. I don’t want to shock anyone here, but . . . gasp, it was a lie. Robert Gibbs had a press conference, and someone asked him if the President watched the election returns, to which he replied, “No.” Someone then asked him if the President watched the HBO documentary about his campaign instead, to which Gibbs replied that he didn’t know.

So who took the sonic leap from “no” and “I don’t know” to “Oh my God, the President is so into himself he watched a documentary about his campaign instead of the election returns that will probably decide his entire future political career?” Well, anchor Martha MacCallum reported it, so I guess she should take responsibility. Wait, no, it looks like Fox News is finger-pointing toward White House correspondent Major Garrett, who said that’s what he thought Gibbs said. But hey -- not to worry. According to whoever is the CYA guy at Fox News, it was a “simple mistake.” Sure, it’s a mistake anyone can make – I know I, personally, am constantly mixing up “yes” for “no,” and “I don’t know” for “absolutely.”

See, this is where the “we reap what we sow” thing comes into play. Some other network – okay, maybe we’d believe somebody actually misheard. But Fox . . . it’s the proverbial boy who cried wolf, with zero creds. And MacCallum – as reported by News Hounds, MacCallum seems to have a little trouble overall with the whole journalistic fact-checking integrity thing. Back in May, she failed to report accurate facts on the story about Madonna adopting an African child. (See, that’s the thing about Fox. Why should it worry about little pesky details like truth and facts when the viewers at Fox are willing to swallow it all whole?) In another example of journalistic excellence, as reported by News Hounds’ Priscilla, MacCallum also elected not to check into polling data or statistics in a discussion she “moderated” back in April about President Obama’s speech at Notre Dame.

But, to be fair, I want to give credit where credit is due. Fox News is a lying sack network with a bunch of lying sack reporters, anchors, Foxettes, contributors, analysts, pundits and all-around talking heads.

There. Fair.