Sunday, January 30, 2005

Joseph K's News Embargo Ends, Irony Ensues...

With today being an election day in Iraq, I decided to end my news embargo and watch the coverage. Seeking to be entertained while being "informed," I tuned into Fox News. And boy did it deliver.

One of their experts speaking authoritatively on the Iraqi elections and what they mean for democracy in the muslim world: Robert McFarlane. McFarlane was the National Security Advisor to Ronald Reagan in the mid 1980s, where he pressured Reagan (who was slowly descending into dementia) into trading arms to an Iran -- run by non-democratic ayatollah's -- for hostages. He testified under oath that Reagan knew about the deals before the arms were sent, got swept up in all the controversy (Reagan's version was at odds with McFarlane's) and ended up ODing on Valium, an apparent suicide attempt. He was eventually convicted of withholding information from Congress and was given two years probabtion. George Bush senior eventually gave him a pardon. A crook who lies to or mislead Congress about secret arms deals to authoritarian, oppressive states commenting on open and free elections in Iraq, hmm...

Yeah, that McFarlane is on T.V. giving his thoughts and insights on the significance of the Iraqi elections and emerging democracy on Fox News. What, was Poindexter busy? They have the own in-house arms-for-hostages crook, Ollie North; why not use him rather than importing McFarlane?

I didn't see any of the above in the brief bio the Fox News anchor gave about him, so the average Fox News viewer -- who probably knows none of the above -- was introduced to him as a genial man who stated the network/administration spin thoughtfully and articulately. At the same time, the average Fox viewer was being deceived about the dubious background of the pundits being rolled out to provide an analysis of the situation for them. I swear, Fox News is the absolute best written and acted news satire on T.V.


Blogger Earl Cootie said...

You're a braver man than I, Joseph K. Just a few minutes with Fox News and I'm screeching and flailing my arms over my head like a circus chimp. (I'm sad to admit that since the last round of elections even the nightly six o'clock network news has been replaced in my household with Who Wants To Be A Millionaire... And I'm almost equally sad to admit that I'm beginning to develop a crush on Meredith Vieira. Sigh. Have I no shame?) But, ahhh, it is pleasing indeed to think of Fox News as a postmodern Orson Welles' War of the Worlds. Won't we all be surprised when the show's over and we find that we've been rubes?

1:15 PM  

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