Did you know that Sean Hannity is "an academic"? That Obama administration officials love Fox News' White House reporters? That CNN refuses to have Republicans on its program? That Barack Obama made a "racist comment" last summer? That Glenn Beck is "purely Libertarian"? Or that there's no bias -- none -- in Fox's presentation of the news?
At least that's the gospel according to Rupert Murdoch this month.
In truth, thanks to Murdoch's recent laundry list of public falsehoods, we now know that Fox News' misinformation culture starts at the very top, inside the corner office of Murdoch, the CEO of News Corp., Fox News' parent company. It turns out Murdoch functions as his own one-man misinformation machine. Who knew?
But with his collection recent falsehoods regarding Fox News, a rather obvious question has been raised: How come Murdoch remains systematically uninformed about his controversial cable channel? The sad truth is Murdoch either has no idea what kind of programming Fox News now produces, or he's too embarrassed to watch and acknowledge it. Neither scenario is particularly flattering for the aging CEO.
Murdoch wants to pretend (at least to himself) that ratings are up because of the sterling and insightful news reports and opinion programs Fox News is producing. He doesn't want to sully his reputation by acknowledging the hate speech and faux journalism he profits off of because Murdoch, no doubt, wants very much to maintain his charter membership in the very clubby social circles that he's traveled in for years between Washington, D.C., and New York City (i.e. Murdoch likes being invited back to Charlie Rose's round table). It's where the very serious gather to discuss the very serious topics of the day. But, of course, Fox News today is a purposefully un-serious operation. (i.e. Obama is nothing more than a lowly racist/communist/Nazi/fascist) And if Murdoch publicly acknowledged that, it would reflect poorly on him.
So, instead, he opts for the charade and he creates his own idea of what Fox News is today -- an idea that does not match reality.
Read the entire Media Matters column here.