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Fox Suddenly Cares About the Deficit, but is Silent on Cost of Iraq War

Reported by Melanie - September 22, 2005

Ever since Republicans realized that the damage from Hurricane Katrina was going to require the government to spend serious money helping actual citizens, the d-word - deficit - has smashed through the Fox News airwaves. When tax cuts for the rich and the folly of the Iraq war started digging us deeper and deeper into a hole, deficits weren't mentioned. Now, with costs rising in the face of Katrina and the looming Hurricane Rita, Fox can't say it enough: "What about the deficit?" and, "How are we going to pay for this?"

Yesterday (September 21, 2005) during Your World, the issue came up in no less than three separate segments.

In an interview with Trent Lott (R-MS), Cavuto wondered whether, "[T]he costs are getting to be prohibitive ... we're dealing with a government that has limited resources."

In an interview with Liz Ann Sonders of Charles Schwab, Cavuto said, "The fear seems to be that ... Uncle Sam is pouring out a lot of money ... money that he does not have ... so if we see more of these and we have a deficit-riddled government providing more and more help, do you worry eventually about problems?" Cavuto said people on Wall Street are telling him that we're, "eventually going to wake-up after the hurricane season is long over and be saddled with a huge bill..."

Guest Scott Hanson of MoneyMatters.com said, "I don't know how we're gonna afford this, quite frankly."

Comment: This post represents one hour of Fox broadcasting, yet the word "deficit" is everywhere on Fox these days. Now that real life has burst onto the scene, deficits matter, but the word missing from the discussions on Fox is the word, "Iraq." The nearly $2 billion we spend every week to keep American troops in the Middle East hasn't yet joined words like "cuts in discretionary spending" and "entitlement programs." Sometimes Fox can't get enough of Iraq and sometimes it can't get far enough away from it.

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