The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Tuesday, July 25, 2006

More fun with Fox and Stephen Colbert

One thing that annoys me about debating right-wingers in the age of Fox is they way they've adopted one of the network's favorite cheats, the "out of context" defense. Bill O'Reilly is a master of this, endlessly referring to Media Matters as smear merchants when all they do is provide video and text outtakes from his show-- unedited. Just claim that without noting something from elsewhere in the show, or a different show, or a speech from ten years ago, that your critic is taking it out of context-- and no one can ever pin you down. You can conveniently weasel out of anything you say, and even turn the tables on your critics.

Of course, Fox has also mastered the art of deliberately taking things out of context in order to deceive the poor slobs dumb enough to regard 'Fox News' as something other than an oxymoron. Case in point: Stephen Colbert begins a bit with "Let's have some fun," and proceeds to goad a laughing and uncomfortable Democratic Congressman into saying he likes nose candy and hookers. Fox's technical wizards leave the egging on and the laughter on the cutting room floor and present it as "shocking" footage of an arrogant Democrat making light of drug use. Of course, they left in those initial four words-- that way they can claim it was obviously a spoof, but gullible viewers can give themselves an aneurysm thinking about how evil Democrats are.

The audio is lousy, but you can see the Fox clip (complete with phony outrage from the anchor) and the actual clip at the link above. Includes complimentary Michael Moore-style narration from whoever compiled it.