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Tilting at Windmills

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January 17, 2007
By: Kevin Drum

IKE OR NIXON?....Harold Meyerson on whether war-weary Republicans will eventually embrace the conciliatory politics of Dwight Eisenhower or the scorched-earth politics of Richard Nixon:

The guy to watch in all this is the pooh-bah of Fox News, Roger Ailes. Nixon's onetime aide guides a TV network that is Nixonian to its bones -- Fox's raison d'etre is to bash liberals, real or imagined. But Ailes can't be insensible to the war's effects on Republican electoral prospects. If Fox News were to break with Bush on Iraq, that would be proof positive that even the Nixonians believe there's no way, politically, they can salvage this miserable war.

Hmmm....

Kevin Drum 1:12 AM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (72)

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Enh. "Republicans" don't have much earth-scorching power left these days. The Administration does, though, and I think we know what side they come down on.

Posted by: Aaron S. Veenstra on January 17, 2007 at 1:17 AM | PERMALINK

This is not a miserable war for the Administration. They have won. They are destroying the Middle East, which everyone here (I am writing this from Egypt) believes is the true goal...it is said again and again in the newspapers and in fact, Netanyahu's memo from Richard Perle said that Iraq had to be destroyed. It didn't say anything about democracy...for God's sake...we helped kill off their last democratically elected leader back in the 50s), transferring massive amounts of wealth from the middle class to themselves through the military industrial complex, put up smokescreens that have allowed them to destroy freedom in American, including the destruction of the most basic law of human rights ever known, habeas corpus, and, of course, interferred with China's oil contracts.

This is the most successful presidency in Republican history for the people who are running this show and profiting from it. The stupid, dull American public is the failure.

Cheers!
Christine

Posted by: christine on January 17, 2007 at 1:31 AM | PERMALINK

This is the very definition of a silly question.

David Brooks has the same fantasy-- that one day Warner and Lott will go to the White House and tell bush's people "it's over, there's no support for you anymore here" and bush/cheney will just shrug their shoulders and go "oh, darn."

If either Meyerson or Brooks is serious about what they're saying, they don't understand what they're dealing with. The only justification bush or Darth Cheney even thinks of is "just try and stop me."

In fact, I have a bet going that if they're both impeached and convicted they won't leave. They'll have to be dragged out of all their undisclosed locations by federal marshals.

They don't play by anyone's rules. They're the guys who would bring in B-52 strikes if they saw mice in the barn. If they thought someone said they saw mice in the barn, more like.

Posted by: Altoid on January 17, 2007 at 1:36 AM | PERMALINK

I'm trying to imagine what form of 'reality shows' FOX is contemplating to counter the dismal headlines from their "News" department. Red-state America is still their bread & butter.

These folks race home after church, draw the shades, and watch hours of "Cops", "Trading Mommys" and "The Bachelorette". A morality whiplash that no other broadcast company could withstand for a day.

They're kinda bummed about cancelling Simpson's "If I Did It" docu-drama of how he murdered people. But life goes on.

Posted by: wishIwuz2 on January 17, 2007 at 1:37 AM | PERMALINK

If Fox News were to break with Bush on Iraq, that would be proof positive that even the Nixonians believe there's no way, politically, they can salvage this miserable war.

Roger Ailes as Walter Cronkite? Yeah, right.

Posted by: Vincent on January 17, 2007 at 1:47 AM | PERMALINK

Billmon came to the same conclusion as Christine above. It was shortly before he hung it up for an abbriviated time, came back for an even more abbriviated time, then hung it up for good. It was the post that talked about Thorea saying "The question isn't why am I in here, the question is why are you out there?" It'll take me a minute to remember the whole story. Anyways, Billmon was frustrated at what the US is doing to people the world over, and the lack of protestation from its people. It was a more despondant post he's known for. It sounded like he was too weary to go on, the inhumanity finally got to him.

I think Christine's right, at the risk of sounding like a blame-America-firster: We're doing some bad, bad shit around the world. And I type away on my keyboard.

I guess this is what a Brave New World tries to put in perspective, huh? Rampant injustice? Just take your soma or go shopping for that newer, bigger tv. The man at the top will work everything out. It's not your place to worry about his job.

I'd be inclined to think sane republicans can win out, but McCain had that sane thing going for a long time, and look what happened to him. The only way repubs will come around is if they are in fact, sane. I'm surprised you think some of these people have the capacity to come around.

The machinations of power prohibit a return to sanity.

Posted by: A different matt on January 17, 2007 at 1:55 AM | PERMALINK

You have to believe that for imcumbants, with the mood of the nation as it is, would have to move to the center, mostly.

So the question is, what's the mood in the party? And they will behind the curve on this one. The rightists will not be marginalized immediately.

So they will remain the minority party for a little while now, if the Dems stay on center track.

Nixon or Ike? Well, of course they're going to loose the presidency in 2008 so it really doesn't matter.

Hopfully, over the next 6-10 years we can start healing the country, return the legislative houses to their proper use, and keep the Supreme Court out of the hands of the right-wing legislative judges those repugnuts so love.

Oh, and habeas corpus and private phone calls would be nice, too!

Posted by: notthere on January 17, 2007 at 1:56 AM | PERMALINK

While Nixon did politics like war, he also worked with the Democrats on many issues, like housing programs and the Environmental Protection Agency. Though I do think that the reason Nixon was attracted to FDR-style big government projects was that he saw it as a way to grab more power for himself.

Posted by: Joe Buck on January 17, 2007 at 1:58 AM | PERMALINK

notthere: so, what is the center? If the center position is the one that has equal numbers of people on each side, then the centrist position is to bring the war to as rapid an end as possible. Likewise, the center deeply disapproves of George W. Bush. Joe Lieberman cannot be considered a centrist, because his top priorities are supported by a tiny fraction of the public.

Posted by: Joe Buck on January 17, 2007 at 2:04 AM | PERMALINK

You might want to take a look at Matt Taibbi's recent Children of Agnew piece in Rolling Stone.

Posted by: Roxanne on January 17, 2007 at 2:20 AM | PERMALINK

Fox will stick with the war because it is part of their brand.

Posted by: Dan on January 17, 2007 at 2:22 AM | PERMALINK

Joe Buck --

centrist (in USian shouldn't that be centerist?) is a deliberately vague term. Much as Joe L. gives me the creeps and it's hard not to define him by his stand on Iraq, that's not all he is.

There is a certain mind set out there that is incapable of discerning the difference between the threat of terrorism and Bush's war.

However, yes, there's a huge weight out there to pull out of Iraq. It's only a matter of time unless people want to give the ultimate failure one last, last, last chance to show what a failure he is.

I wouldn't want to tie myself to that ship.

And what is McCain going to say? We should have sent more? And finally the GS might speak up and say "That's all we had."

Posted by: notthere on January 17, 2007 at 2:28 AM | PERMALINK

Murdoch abandoned the Tories in the UK, when it became clear that they had gone insane. So it could happen here.

Posted by: craigie on January 17, 2007 at 2:35 AM | PERMALINK

Craigie, you are way brighter than that.

Murdoch is a business mogul saw the wind and knew how to get more butter on his bread.

Fox will stick with their loyal audience and Repub allegiance.

Posted by: notthere on January 17, 2007 at 2:42 AM | PERMALINK

Do the Nixon parallels for 2008 include the Democrats running George McGovern again?

Posted by: rnc on January 17, 2007 at 2:46 AM | PERMALINK

"Well, of course they're going to loose the presidency in 2008 so it really doesn't matter."

They've already loosed the presidency; now it's time to lose it.

Posted by: Kenji on January 17, 2007 at 2:59 AM | PERMALINK

The answer to Kevin's question is Nixon. The Republicans, as a functioning political party are currently to far to the right to transition that quickly, especially the ones that hold all the power and, therefore, they will keep the same tact. There is simply no one of particular significance within the Republican party, save for perhaps Chuck Hagel, that offers anything different. And for A Different Matt, who above mused that McCain ever was different, think again. I live in Arizona, have for most of my life and McCain is nothing short of a standard issue conservative right wing conservative Republican. His reputation as a "maverick" "straight talker" ect. is all a fake PR front, and always has been. Check his real voting record on issues that count; he is strictly by the right wing book. With McCain you must always look to what he does, not what he talks about or says he does. The Military Commissions Act debacle is a prime example; he made a big show of rebellion and reason, and everybody bought in to it, then he sold out to the Bush shaft of the Constitution lock, stock and barrel. He always does in the end.

Posted by: bmaz on January 17, 2007 at 3:28 AM | PERMALINK

The Battle of Baghdad is about to begin. Whose side are you on?

Posted by: mike cook on January 17, 2007 at 6:38 AM | PERMALINK

I don't see the Republican Party returning to Eisenhoweresque bipartisanship any time soon. That approach is not what got them majority status in Congress or gave them the White House for 18 of the last 26 years. They will use the sucker-punching, gutter-sliming approach perfected by Matt Drudge, Rush Limbaugh and the thousand other slime merchants on the right, aided and funded by Rupert Murdoch, Sun Myung Moon and Richard Mellon-Scaife (all reprehensible human beings, I might add).

That's why Democrats need to be very clean and take the high road, but also be very tough and respond vigorously and quickly to personal attacks.

Posted by: The Conservative Deflator on January 17, 2007 at 6:55 AM | PERMALINK

I disagree with several statements.

First of all, Eisenhower was actually pretty scortched earth. Under his leadership, Red-baiting was the order of the day. Many leading Dems were called "soft on Communism," "pinko", "fellow travelers", etc. Ike seemed conciliatory because he sat there with a big grin and ssid little. But, he was in charge of what his party did.

Second, Fox's raison d'etre is NOT to bash liberals It's purpose is to deliver news. BTW Fox no doubt tilts right, but it has a big number of liberal and Democratics people.

Third, if Fox were to break Bush on Iraq (or to prevent Bush from being broken), that would show that they're not really a news station. That would mean that they see themselves as policy-makers, thus failing to fulfill their goal.

Posted by: ex-liberal on January 17, 2007 at 7:03 AM | PERMALINK

"The Battle of Baghdad is about to begin. Whose side are you on?"

The side of liberty, and justice, and honor, the side that believes in the principles on which this country was founded--the side, in other words, that predicts that the "Battle of Baghdad" will be yet another cruel farce. Whose side are you on?

Posted by: rea on January 17, 2007 at 7:44 AM | PERMALINK

The Taibbi essay I referenced above is not Children of Agnew, which is actually Jay Rosen's essay here. Both are worth reading and are tangentially related.

Sorry. It was late and I was sleepy.

Posted by: Roxanne on January 17, 2007 at 7:44 AM | PERMALINK

Implicit in this statement, of course, is the fact that political calculations trump national security concerns for the Republicans. But, of course, we knew that.

The Battle of Baghdad is about to begin. Whose side are you on?

You're posting that from Baghdad, of course, aren't you?

I disagree with several statements.

I'll give "ex-liberal"'s assertions the consideration they're due. There, all done.

Posted by: Gregory on January 17, 2007 at 8:27 AM | PERMALINK

Murdoch's sole allegiance is to the bottom line. If FoxNews starts losing money, and more important, becomes politically impotent, Ailes will be out and a PG rated Girls Gone Wild will be in.

Posted by: Steve Paradis on January 17, 2007 at 8:52 AM | PERMALINK

Bush and Cheney make Nixon look like a warm and cuddling choir boy. Faux News would have to break with everything this White House stands for.

Posted by: pgl on January 17, 2007 at 9:24 AM | PERMALINK

Have Alan Colmes and Kevin Drum ever been seen together, or are they the same person?

Makes me wonder.

Posted by: trifecta on January 17, 2007 at 9:33 AM | PERMALINK

Does the Republican party remain a viable national party?

I look across the line into Kansas and am amazed as it seems to be moving away from the hard right Republicans. I listened to a talk news segment on the local NPR station the other day. Two Republican leaders and a Democrat were being interviewed. Regular Kansans called in to ask questions of the Republican leadership. Talk about a lack of respect. The common theme, "when are you ideologs going to help us regular Kansas folk." Far tougher questions than the very polite announcer er, reporter, ask. Moderate Republicans seem to be leaving the Republican party and are embracing a rather conservative but identifiably Democratic party. Wonder why arch conservative Sam Brownback came out against the surge. Probably it was principle, but it was principle under written by an acute sense that his senate seat could be in the balance if he doesn't take the new Kansas reality into account. I suspect that the Republican party operatives outside the administration are hoping the "lead from the hard right edge" administration just goes away.

Posted by: Ron Byers on January 17, 2007 at 9:33 AM | PERMALINK

Yes, ex-liberal

Roger Ailes, Republican Operative, Tony Snow, and Brit Hume (George Bush Sr's squash partner) are all there to give us unbalanced truthiness.

That is their whole point of existence. Actually the worst is Brit Hume, who is supposed to be their straight news man. His wife is an idiot, their closet case son killed himself and it just made Brit even more angry and right wing. He doesn't deliver straight news. I would rather him even do some things with a right wing twist at times. He buries bad news stories for Bush, then poo-poos them. One day, there were hundreds of people blown up in Iraq, and he opened the show with how stupid Cindy Sheehan was. Yes, fair & balanced all right.

Posted by: trifecta on January 17, 2007 at 9:39 AM | PERMALINK

Fox will stick with their loyal audience and Repub allegiance. Posted by: notthere on January 17, 2007 at 2:42 AM

These would be the first rats off the ship if this war started impacting their personal wallets or lifestyles. That is the problem with national debt, it puts off such effects to the next generations. These folks are in the bubble with Shrub.

Posted by: Zit on January 17, 2007 at 9:40 AM | PERMALINK

These dogs only know one bark.

No "hmmmmmmm" about it...

Posted by: ROTFLMLiberalAO on January 17, 2007 at 9:56 AM | PERMALINK

Fox has completed their job with regards to Bush. Constitutionally, he can not stand for election/selection again.

The job now is to badger democrats and keep an eye down the field to see what can be done for the eventual 2008 Republican candidate. A certain amount of idle whistling is necessary to indicate to the audience that Fox News really never had that much invested emotionally in the Iraq war.

Posted by: toast on January 17, 2007 at 10:08 AM | PERMALINK

Faux is going down with Smirk. No one will believe them if they bail on Smirk. What Democrats go on Faux? Mostly it is DLC types.

Posted by: Ghost of Tom Joad on January 17, 2007 at 10:11 AM | PERMALINK

I suppose we have to wait till Friday to find out the new cat's name and whether she's successfully tackled inkblot in a sneak attack yet.

Posted by: toast on January 17, 2007 at 10:12 AM | PERMALINK

mike cook: The Battle of Baghdad is about to begin. Whose side are you on?

Well, let's see. There's the Shia, the Sunni, the Iranians, the Saudis, the terrists, the Mercans, the contractors... Did I miss anyone?

Oh yeah, good and evil. Any idea how to sort that out?

Posted by: bigcat on January 17, 2007 at 10:12 AM | PERMALINK

Christine absolutely nails it on foreign policy...

>"They are destroying the Middle East, which everyone here (I am writing this from Egypt) believes is the true goal"

Read some of the Neocon and Israeli policy papers written by Perle and cronies, It's laid out pretty clearly there.

And the Bush domestic agenda too..

>"This is the most successful presidency in Republican history for the people who are running this show and profiting from it"

Rove's stated dream is to roll back the country to the 1890's. They figure they need to destroy the US in order to 'save' it.

Posted by: Buford on January 17, 2007 at 10:15 AM | PERMALINK

The Republicans and their various cohorts might well give up on this catastrophe of a war but not before they find a way to definitively pin it on the Democrats.

Oh, and Bush is definitely like Nixon, but without the brains.

Posted by: LAS on January 17, 2007 at 10:17 AM | PERMALINK

IKE or NIXON or THE WAR CRIMINAL?

"Dozens of university students - most of them women - were slaughtered yesterday as they emerged from classes in a Shia district of Baghdad in the bloodiest attack since the execution of Saddam Hussein.
Police said that at least 65 people were killed and 100 injured by two bombs designed to cause maximum damage when students left college for the day.

The bodies of veiled women lay amid burning cars as emergency services tried to rescue the wounded.

Body parts littered the streets and minibuses filled with students who had been on their way home were charred beyond salvage. Young men picked up bodies as women wept.

"Save me," bleeding victims in the streets begged passersby. One man searched for his son and finally found his head and torso but no legs.

"Where is his other half?" he asked and then shook with violent sobs.

Answer: BUSH. THE WAR CRIMINAL.

Posted by: ROTFLMLiberalAO on January 17, 2007 at 10:36 AM | PERMALINK

The Battle of Baghdad is about to begin. Whose side are you on?

There you go again. If you're not on the side of the liars and incompetants who got us into this mess by being wrong about everything, you're not a patriotic American.

Posted by: asdfg on January 17, 2007 at 10:39 AM | PERMALINK

Oh, and Bush is definitely like Nixon, but without the brains.

There is another difference. Nixon was raised a Quaker; he had some self-awareness that he was in fact evil. On the other hand, GWB fervently believes that he is doing God's work.

Posted by: Disputo on January 17, 2007 at 10:49 AM | PERMALINK

ROTFLMLiberalAO: on "Dozens of university students - most of them women - were slaughtered yesterday as they emerged from classes in a Shia district of Baghdad"

The murderers of these innocent victims are insurgent and al Qaeda terrorists. Bush is trying to defeat these terrorists. ROTFL apparently wants the US to withdraw our troops and let the terrorists can take over the whole country.

It's hard for me to understand how FOTFL's position is the moral high ground

Posted by: ex-liberal on January 17, 2007 at 10:51 AM | PERMALINK

The Battle of Baghdad is about to begin. Whose side are you on?

Oh fucking Christ.

Bad news, Mike, the Battle of Baghdad was lost a couple of years ago. The complete lawlessness, kidnappings, and scores of people being brutally murdered daily must have escaped your notice.

You must have also missed the interview with one of the Mahdi Army leaders yesterday in which he said the order had been given to hide their weapons, change their clothes, and melt into the population while the U.S. troops were in the city.

This isn't World of Warcraft or the Battle for Helm's Deep. This is just another misstep in a poorly planned, bungled, illegal invasion. You can set down your plastic Glamdring and step away from the monitor, nothing is going to change.

Remember Operation Lightning that like this was going to secure Baghdad once and for all? Yeah, neither does anybody else.

Posted by: trex on January 17, 2007 at 11:04 AM | PERMALINK

ROTFLMLiberalAO: on "Dozens of university students - most of them women - were slaughtered yesterday as they emerged from classes in a Shia district of Baghdad"
The murderers of these innocent victims are insurgent and al Qaeda terrorists. Bush is trying to defeat these terrorists. ROTFL apparently wants the US to withdraw our troops and let the terrorists can take over the whole country.
It's hard for me to understand how FOTFL's position is the moral high ground
Posted by: ex-liberal on January 17, 2007 at 10:51 AM | PERMALINK

There you go again. Rationalising why we are in Baghdad AFTER we get there. Tell me ex-liberal, what was the situation in Iraq BEFORE we went in and what is the situation now? Is our continuing presence part of the solution or part of the problem? This is the debate. How quick you are to smear ROTFL. He wants the terrorists to take the country. How the hell would you know? You a mind reader or something? Maybe ROTFL wants us to leave so the political process in Iraq can normalize and stabalize. Maybe he feels that our continued presence is preventing a resolution. Why are you so against debating this? Why do you have to place us in the category of "terrorist loving idiot" to make your points. That's not right. It's unAmerican. No one has the high ground in this tragedy but I can tell you this ROTFLMLiberalAO is on higher ground than ex-liberal because he did not champion this war, he did not vote for the president or his party, he did not help America into this blunder.

How cowardly is it to use tragedies to boost your politics over your rival. Republicans are ill.

Posted by: Nemesis on January 17, 2007 at 11:25 AM | PERMALINK

George Bush has embraced Machiavellianism as a system. It is the world-view of Dick Cheney- a man who respects power more than idealistic egghead constitutions.

One of the most illuminating books to read is the The Dual State by Ernst Fraenkal (1941). In his formulation, the suspension of Habeas Corpus was central to the foundation of the Prerogative State- a state of lawless and arbitrary political power that nonetheless has the official appearance of lawfulness and liberal-democratic legitimacy. The Prerogative State is the hallmark of fascist mastery of Constitutional government.

Here he uses an analysis of Machiavelli to illuminate the condition of prerogative power used by the fascists to assume control of the Weimar Republic under the state of emergency:

“Every nation would allow that there are emergencies in which it is the right and the duty of a government to proclaim a state of siege and authorize the suppression of the common rules of remedy by the rapid methods of martial law. Now what Machiavelli did, or what his followers have been doing ever since, is to elevate this principle into the normal rule for statesmen’s actions. When his books are made into a system they must result in a perpetual suspension of the Habeas Corpus Acts of the whole human race. It is not the removal of restraints under extraordinary emergencies that is the fallacy of Machiavelli, it is the erection of this removal into an ordinary and everyday rule of action”

Posted by: bellumregio on January 17, 2007 at 11:27 AM | PERMALINK

The murderers of these innocent victims are insurgent and al Qaeda terrorists.

Really? Insurgents and al Qaeda, working together, pulled off this particular attack? I'd be interested in knowing your sources for this assertion...unless, of course, it's "out of your ass," as usual.

Bush is trying to defeat these terrorists.

Objection: Assertion not in evidence.

Plus, even if Bush is trying, he's self-evidently failing -- at enormous cost in American lives and treasure. So you can take your "moral high ground" arguments and shove them from whence you pull the rest of your assertions, "ex-liberal".

Posted by: Gregory on January 17, 2007 at 11:30 AM | PERMALINK

Remember Operation Lightning that like this was going to secure Baghdad once and for all? Yeah, neither does anybody else.

I thought that was Operation Together Forward...

You must have also missed the interview with one of the Mahdi Army leaders yesterday in which he said the order had been given to hide their weapons, change their clothes, and melt into the population while the U.S. troops were in the city.

Which illustrates the idiocy -- not to mention the moral bankruptcy -- of the Bush Cultist position. he insurgents can fight in times and places of their choosing; the US, by contrast, is mostly reactive and rarley had the initiative; when we do, as noted, the insurgents can decline to give battle and melt into the population. And, of course, we're eventually going to go home (unless the fantasies of neocon wet dreamers like "ex-liberal" are realized, and all Bush's claims of "no permanent bases" are bullshit), whereas the insurgents, who actually live in Iraq, aren't going anywhere.

Again, Colin Powell and George H. W. Bush foresaw these problems; Bush the Lesser and his supporters, rather than address them, dismissed them with happy talk about being "greeted as liberators" and aspersions to the questioners' patriotism. Alas, they were, and remain, wrong, and Americans continue to pay the price in blood and treasure for their errors.

Posted by: Gregory on January 17, 2007 at 11:37 AM | PERMALINK

Meyerson: If Fox News were to break with Bush on Iraq...

Wishful thinking.

Murdoch goes where the money is...Witness China, where he agreed to censor NewsCorp to satisfy authorities and gain entry into that market...then got into hot water for illegally leasing its channels to make a few bucks.

'So', you may ask, 'wouldn't that mean that Murdoch would alter their strong right-wing slant to hold onto/capture market share?'...Maybe, but I doubt it.

Here's why: Back in my own radio days, I learned a little something about audience loyalty - people who listen to country music are the most loyal listeners, for example. Niche programming creates loyal listeners/viewers. The trick is to be in a niche that has enough of an audience to lure advertising buys and generate a profit for the station.

Same thing with Fox News. They have a hard-core audience who won't leave, won't change the channel during commercials, et cetera. FNC's niche is it's conservative slant; I believe that much of the success they've had since 2000 is due to their strong alignment with that side of the ideological spectrum...However...

...although still #1 in overall ratings among cable new channels, FNC's audience is down 24 percent from a year ago. This may indicate that FNC is losing its more transitory audience (MSNBC is up 19% in the 25-54 demo) and is 'boiling down' to a still-sizable audience of loyal viewers.

So, when pitching ad time to a prospective advertisers, the drop in audience isn't pretty, but both the size and loyalty of the audience are huge factors...making the possiblity of FNC changing its tune to reflect the current mainstream mood less likely.

Posted by: grape_crush on January 17, 2007 at 11:38 AM | PERMALINK

KEVIN DRUM IS A WAR MONGERING SCUM BAG! HE CAN'T REMEMBER??!!!??? KEVIN, YOU HAVE BLOOD ON YOUR HANDS FOR SUPPORTING THIS WAR. WE WILL REMEMBER THAT FOR A VERY VERY LONG TIME.

Posted by: dd on January 17, 2007 at 11:44 AM | PERMALINK

ex-liberal wrote: "Fox's raison d'etre is NOT to bash liberals It's purpose is to deliver news."

The purpose of Fox News is to induce irreversible brain damage in its viewers, thereby creating an army of ignorant, weak-minded, gullible mental slaves, like yourself.

Posted by: SecularAnimist on January 17, 2007 at 11:57 AM | PERMALINK

FNC's niche is it's conservative slant..

Before y'all get all grammatical on my ass, I know the word is supposed to be 'its'. Forgot to preview.

Posted by: grape_crush on January 17, 2007 at 12:01 PM | PERMALINK

grape_crush,

On behalf of we'alls here at Pedants, whew, thanks for the correction.

Posted by: Pedants 'R Us on January 17, 2007 at 12:23 PM | PERMALINK

Steve Paradis and grape crush implied that Fox News would change their obvious right-wing bias, if they felt the "market" had shifted or that tastes had changed. I have to disagree. In fact, one of the more interesting observations that can be made about the modern conservative movement in America is their willingness to lose money year after year, in support of their media outlets/propaganda machine.

Take The Washington Times, for example. Investigative reporter Robert Parry has reported that Sun Myung Moon has poured more than $3 billion (with a "b") into that newspaper over the last 25 years or so and hasn't made a dime. In other words, that newspaper would have been bankrupt years ago without Moon's support. Richard Mellon-Scaife has done the same with the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. I expect Rupert Murdoch would do the same, but is constrained by the fact that The News Corporation, Fox News' parent company, is a publicly traded company.

As I have posted here a number of times - Don't kid yourself into thinking that conservatives believe in free markets. They believe only in rigged markets.

TCD

Posted by: The Conservative Deflator on January 17, 2007 at 1:30 PM | PERMALINK

If Fox News were to break with Bush on Iraq, that would be proof positive that even the Nixonians believe there's no way, politically, they can salvage this miserable war.

No, it would mean that Murdoch has drawn the sensible conclusion from last year's elections, and doesn't want to be on the wrong side of the party that is going to control his broadcast licences after 2008.

Posted by: Peter Principle on January 17, 2007 at 1:37 PM | PERMALINK

The Conservative Deflator on January 17, 2007 at 1:30 PM:

...grape crush implied that Fox News would change their obvious right-wing bias, if they felt the "market" had shifted or that tastes had changed.

Actually, no...Quite the opposite. My take is that FNC won't do anything that may risk losing a core audience of loyal conservative viewers with the result of lower ratings...which translates into lower ad revenues...which translates into less money for Murdoch.

Sorry if I wasn't clear about that...Thanks for kinda reading my post, 'tho.

Posted by: grape_crush on January 17, 2007 at 1:56 PM | PERMALINK

Oh, what the hell: somebody archive this.

A year from now, the war is for shit. So war hero Hagel beats war hero McCain in a couple early Republican primaries, emerging as the clear leader in a crowded field. Bush vetoes McCain's immigration reform, and he vanishes as a Presidential candidate. Hagel holds off a Republican governor to be named later, despite the governor's better conservative credentials, cuz the media loves the war angle on all politics.

Democrats sensibly nominate a governor. He defeats Hagel, cuz Senators haven't been elected to the Presidency since Elvis was in uniform.

So much for Ike or Nixon.

Posted by: theAmericanist on January 17, 2007 at 2:09 PM | PERMALINK

OK, Nemesis, let's agree for the sake of argument that Bush's decision to overthrow Saddam wrong or even evil. Let's assume that liberals were right to oppose the invasion and that I and Bush were totally wrong.

The US is still left with the decision of what to do right now. If the US invasion was the cause of the current spate of mass murders then perhaps the US has an extra obligation to help make things right, by helping the Iraqi people overcome the insurgents who are committing the murders.

Posted by: ex-liberal on January 17, 2007 at 2:10 PM | PERMALINK

Let's assume that liberals were right to oppose the invasion and that I and Bush were totally wrong.

Assuming "ex-liberal" and Bush are wrong is a pretty safe bet.

Posted by: Gregory on January 17, 2007 at 2:16 PM | PERMALINK

US has an extra obligation to help make things right

Speakign of which, it's a safe bet that "ex-liberal" doesn't believe this statement to the extent of actually enlisting in order to meet the "obligation" he/she/it claims we -- and esecially "ex-liberal," who continues to advocate this bloody mess, to the point of offering "for the sake of argument that Bush's decision to overthrow Saddam [was] wrong," as if evidence if its wrongness wasn't overwhelming by now, and evidence of its rightness so scant -- owe the Iraqis.

In short, "ex-liberal," put up or shut up. Since you do neither, no one takes you seriously.

Posted by: Gregory on January 17, 2007 at 2:22 PM | PERMALINK

by helping the Iraqi people overcome the insurgents who are committing the murders

You have to respect -- no, you don't, really -- "ex-liberal"'s use of rhetoric, dishonest as it it. Why, the number of unfounded assertions he/she/it packs into a single statement can be astonishing; even as one leaves "ex-liberal"'s main point in smoking ruins akin to the neocon ambitions in the Middle East, sometimes the collateral assertions manage to slip by unrebutted. For example, note here the presumption that the US has been at all effective in "helping the Iraqi people overcome the insurgents who are committing the murders," all evidence to the contrary.

Posted by: Gregory on January 17, 2007 at 2:25 PM | PERMALINK

Finally, "ex-liberal," I'm quite serious. If "the US has an extra obligation to help make things right," then war cheerleaders like you have an extra, extra obligation to help make things right. My policy prescription is that you and your ilk volunteer to be shipped to Anbar Province en masse. And if you won't do it, then you have no standing at all to insist that someone else fix Bush's mess for him.

Posted by: Gregory on January 17, 2007 at 2:27 PM | PERMALINK

Yes, and even assuming that responsibility sincerely, which I believe ex-liberal is capable of doing, doesn't get us one iota closer to actually being able to do anything right, good or even remotely affordable about the mess we've made.

Posted by: Kenji on January 17, 2007 at 2:33 PM | PERMALINK

ex-liberal on January 17, 2007 at 2:10 PM:

The US is still left with the decision of what to do right now.

At the risk of taking ex-lib seriously, this is a legitimate point. I do disagree with the remainder of his statement:

....helping the Iraqi people overcome the insurgents who are committing the murders.

Morally, yes, the US has an obligation to try to make things better. But I feel that this is an obligation that the US - especially this administration - cannot fulfill.

All the King's horses and all the King's men couldn't put Humpty together again...Interesting, considering the history behind the rhyme...

Posted by: grape_crush on January 17, 2007 at 2:58 PM | PERMALINK

even assuming that responsibility sincerely, which I believe ex-liberal is capable of doing

On what evidence do you base that statement, Kenji?

Posted by: Gregory on January 17, 2007 at 3:01 PM | PERMALINK

Because, perhaps alone among wingnuts here, ex has occasionally bothered to actually listen to what others are saying and respond specifically. In that crowd, this constitutes miraculously good citizenship.

Okay, we all know the bar is pretty ow these days.

Posted by: Kenji on January 17, 2007 at 3:53 PM | PERMALINK

grape_crush: My take is that FNC won't do anything that may risk losing a core audience of loyal conservative viewers with the result of lower ratings...which translates into lower ad revenues...which translates into less money for Murdoch.


ratings are a combination of 2-factors...

cume....the number of viewers..

and..

the time spent listening or viewing (15-min. segments)

now..

compared to broadcast networks..

what fox lacks in cume..they make up for in tsl..

pandering news is alot easier, cheaper and more profitable than real news..

Posted by: mr. irony on January 17, 2007 at 4:06 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, Mr. Irony, but compared to the other cable news channels, FNC leads the cumulative ratings battle as well, 'tho not as strongly as before. As for TSL, I put that under 'loyalty' - not only people tuning in regularly, but also staying tuned in.

..pandering news is alot easier, cheaper and more profitable than real news..

What? You don't like Inside Edition? Had enough of TomKat?

Posted by: grape_crush on January 17, 2007 at 5:13 PM | PERMALINK

...the bar is pretty low these days...

that should have read.

Posted by: Kenji on January 17, 2007 at 6:44 PM | PERMALINK

Alexander the Great invaded all the way across Asia to the farthest reaches of modern-day Pakistan. Then he withdrew to modern-day Iraq. And died, leaving his cronies in charge, who oversaw the dissolution of the empire he had created.

Personally, as a poster above mentioned that if Bush is impeached, he will not willingly step down - I predict, if not a civil war, at least a fire-fight between his secret service detail, and an FBI SWAT team.

In the end - this country will come out of this stronger. But we have some dark, dark, years ahead of us. Especially if they DON'T impeach the bastard.

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on January 17, 2007 at 8:45 PM | PERMALINK

"Well, of course they're going to loose the presidency in 2008 so it really doesn't matter."

Foxies, thou art loosed!

Posted by: Vincent on January 17, 2007 at 8:53 PM | PERMALINK

More and more people are quoting Eisenhower. He seems almost prescient in his statements about the military-industrial complex tied in with congress, how awful war is--and was he not the one who said those who call for war never spent a moment watching its horror and pain.

Posted by: consider wisely always on January 17, 2007 at 10:29 PM | PERMALINK

Of course the Mahdi army will hide while Americans are around, which is why we will be there while the Iraqi army gets ready to take control. Apparently it was a Sunni attack that blew up all the Shiite university students yesterday. Sunni or al Qaeda. At any rate, I suspect the Iraqi government army will learn how to clamp down on Baghdad problems themselves. The Iraqi army may never want to venture into Anbar Province, for the reason that its recruits don't like to get too far from home.

At any rate, these are not very nice people. They are actually quite a bit worse than even the folks that Clinton was bombing Europe to defeat.

To my mind, there is no bad place to fight Islamo-fascism and there is no bad time to do it. Give up in Iraq now and ten years from now you will curse yourselves for not fighting them in their own backyards when they were relatively weak.

Is ten years too long a time frame to wrap your mind around? What really tickles me is the degree to which Bush-hatred has driven the left to take for granted that Weapons of Mass Destruction were not only not in Iraq, but are never going to be found anywhere.

But WMD's will come out in the open, undoubtedly in the very hands of the people we most do not want to have them.

The other stupid leftist refrain nowadays is that Bush intends to stir up a war against Syria and Iran for no reason at all. That's the Syria that likes to kill any public figure in Lebanon who stands up to them and the Iran that denies the Holocaust and can't wait until its WMD's are ready.

Posted by: mike cook on January 18, 2007 at 12:54 AM | PERMALINK

At any rate, I suspect the Iraqi government army will learn how to clamp down on Baghdad problems themselves.

Yeah, because they've showed such promise over the last three years. Moron.

To my mind, there is no bad place to fight Islamo-fascism and there is no bad time to do it.

You're posting this from Baghdad, are you? No? Well, then, since you aren't doing jack shit to fight "Islamo-fascism", that's one good reason not to take you seriously. That you use the term "Islamo-fascism" is another.

What really tickles me is the degree that Bush Cultists take for granted that posting chest-thumping Rovian bullshit in support of a massivley incompetent and unpopular president is akin to "fighting" the "Islamo-fascism" that has them pissing themselves in fear.

Posted by: Gregory on January 18, 2007 at 8:58 AM | PERMALINK

Dear Gregory; there really exists Islamo-fascism and the most scared, witless, Iraqi-democratic government soldier is still twice the man you will ever become. At any rate, Baghdad is about to be pacified and a stable new peace between Sunni and Shia throughout the Middle East may well fall in place as well, so go suck lemons, my bitter and reality-impaired friend. . .

Posted by: mike cook on January 20, 2007 at 12:29 AM | PERMALINK




 

 

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