CNN’s Reliable Sources analyzed a week of Fox & Friends shows and came up with a devastating takedown that is must-see TV for anyone who cares about how a so-called news program is in service to almost nothing other than Donald Trump.
Host Brian Stelter began his commentary by saying, “What would a daily infomercial for the Trump presidency look like? Well, actually, we don’t have to wonder. We have the answer right in front of us. It’s called Fox & Friends.”
Noting that Fox & Friends is Trump’s favorite morning show and the only show to which he granted interviews this month, Stelter said Reliable Sources decided to do some investigation. (Some transcript excerpts are via Media Matters. All emphases are mine.):
STELTER: We here at Reliable Sources decided to watch an entire week’s worth of the show. We wrote down every story, every guest, every banner. And what we found is that Fox & Friends is really Trump’s safe space. It looks like a newsy, morning show. But Fox executives acknowledge it’s not really a newscast, it’s a conservative-themed talk show. The show is about showering Trump with positive attention and burying his enemies in negative attention. The show’s hosts and regular guests claim that one of his main opponents, you can probably guess, it’s the media.
Although it’s tempting to laugh at the shamelessness of Fox & Friends’ hypocritical attacks on the media, it's effective. “Over time, all of this anti-media talk obviously has an effect on the audience,” Stelter said. He played a clip of a woman echoing the Fox rhetoric as her own.
Stelter ominously added, “Repetition is something we noticed all week long, Monday through Friday. Denying collusion between Trump and Russia was an almost hourly affair.” The show’s “latest obsession,” he said, “has been undermining and attacking the credibility of Special Counsel Robert Mueller.”
“Remember, Trump has been hearing these talking points all week long,” Stelter continued and during Trump’s Friday interview with cohost Ainsley Earhardt, he repeated back the same talking points.
Stelter explained the Fox M.O.: “Heroes vs. villains, us vs. them. On Fox & Friends, Trump is ‘us,’ Mueller is ‘them.”
STELTER: Watching for an entire week, we saw lots of the president’s friends but almost no dissenting voices, no Trump skeptics or critics, except in soundbites which were then knocked down. It’s all about optimism for Trump, resentment about his opponents. You can even see it in the show’s banners on the bottom of the screen.
The hosts and the guests on the show know that the president is watching. And they go out of their way to not only endorse his points of view but to also express their appreciation. […] That expression of appreciation seems to culminate in a celebration of the administration each and every single day.
The bottom line is, You might look at this and see propaganda from Fox. I prefer to think of it as an infomercial. Fox & Friends is selling a product, of course it’s in the guise of a news talk show, just like something on QVC or HSN or all those channels. Now hey, it’s a free country, but viewers should recognize what product Fox is selling.
Every single word in this commentary is exactly right and right on point.
The big question is, why isn’t every single Democrat and/or liberal guest – or just any guest not looking to sell the Trump administration – calling out this snow job?
Watch Stelter offer a crib sheet for any such guest below, from the June 25, 2017 Reliable Sources:
These charlatans are a waste of payroll. If we were in charge of this demonic network all of them would hit the road.
And I share your opinion about those shoutfests. So childish, not authoritative at all. Intended only to shut the other side up. Totally banned during my years as a member of the high school debating team.
Actually I don’t mind today’s RWingers on CNN as much as I positively detested the milquetoast “reporting” that CNN provided during the campaign. Nowadays, it’s sort of fun watching the RWingers twist themselves into pretzels as they try to explain the current administration’s antics as logical and constitutional. Jeffrey Lord’s the silliest on CNN, though Kellyann is pretty close to being even sillier, and Price was lying through his teeth last time I saw him. Even the “deer-in-the-headlights” young blond lady has occasionally admitted that her Dear Leader may not be acting in his own best interests. From her, that’s saying a lot.
Cnn is doing somewhat better, but they’ve still got wayyyyy too many over-the-top right-winger Trump defenders on the payroll and they’re still way to addicted to “crossfire” type shoutfests between guests/commentators. Personally, I hate that stuff.
CNN had been too supine for my taste during the campaign (they kept on bolting into every Frump-related rabbit-hole). Since the election, upon realising how dangerous this administration is in almost all respects (including but not limited to freedom of the press), CNN has been doing a far better job, albeit still too ready to dive into rabbitholes: as suggested by Troy Donahue on the same show, they have got to spend less time on Trump, himself, and more time on the foreseeable repercussions that an incompetent and unprincipled administration will have on the inhabitants of this planet, including Americans.