By now most of you are aware that FOX News exposed its viewers to the head shot suicide of a carjacker on live TV. According to an AP report:
Fox News was covering the chase that began at midday Friday using a live helicopter shot from its Phoenix affiliate when the man driving the small vehicle stopped, ran into the desert and appeared to place a handgun to his head and fire.
Fox News anchor Shepard Smith told viewers minutes later that the video was supposed to be on a delay.
After a commercial break, Smith said “we really messed up, and we’re all very sorry.” SOURCE
Hey, if that’s Smith’s contention, who am I to doubt him? I think this is more probable than believing, as some may, that they knew they were not on time delay and were simply trying to cover the fact up. But for those of us who are familiar with perhaps the most biased news network on TV that can claim having the largest number of misinformed viewers, getting things wrong is a business model for Newscorp, the multi-national company, owned by billionaire Rupert Murdoch, that lists FOX News as one of its subsidiaries.
You’ll remember Newscorp owned the now defunct British tabloid, News of the World, that has been charged by Scotland Yard for “engaging in phone hacking, police bribery and exercising improper influence in the pursuit of publishing stories”. The incompetence of this scandal leads to Murdoch himself who now finds himself forced to resign from about a dozen News Corporation boards after being found by a UK parliamentary media committee report “of being ‘not a fit person’ to run a major international business”.
They say the acorn doesn’t fall far from the tree and the numero uno acorn at FOX is Roger Ailes , more affectionately known to some as Jabba the Hut. Ailes has made it his mission to skewer the news to favor right-wing ideologies. His philosophy is assimilated by those who come on board for the cable news channel and what seems to be a pattern here is either sheer incompetence or deliberate deception where known mistakes are made.
In the case of sheer incompetence, which the airing of the carjacker suicide falls under in my opinion, we have as evidence the “news flash” FOX blurted out about how the “individual mandate has been ruled unconstitutional” just minutes before the actual Supreme Court ruling declared it constitutional. Whoops!
On the other hand, for the argument that this was a case of deliberate deception, we find in an earlier screw up where FOX News got busted splicing a six month old video clip to make a compilation clip appear Biden said the “fundamentals of the economy is stong.” It’s not the first time FOX has put false information out there, only to be caught later and apologize for it. It’s a practice known as shoot first and express regret later, with the belief that people are easily duped into forgiving the apologist.
It’s not that FOX stands alone in making embarrasing errors, deliberate or otherwise, but that they actually set the standard for how to go about it in so many ways. Yet they are not to be blamed for this unconscionable assault on journalism. They are only catering to a market where about 30% of the American viewing public actually demand this kind of reporting.