I'm shivering under a blanket right now, having taken as much Aleve as the bottle recommends to address my 103° F. fever as well as the searing pain in my throat. (Yeah, I know it's probably strep; I have an appointment with our GP in two hours. Grrr...bloody children and the oversized Petri dish of a parochial school they go to for daily infusions of education and contagion.)
Will I let that stop me from sharing this tasty bit of told-you-so about Fox
Anyway, word on the street has it that Rupert's henchmen and high priests of the pancake makeup are sick, just sick, I tell you, and they're blaming their woes on none other than the Grand Old Party of Elephantine Debt, Death, and Destruction. From Eric Boehlert at Salon:
Bottom line is that Fox News is in for a very rough 2008. And the umbrella reason for that is quite simple: Eight years ago the all-news cable channel went all-in on the presidency of George W. Bush and became a broadcast partner with the White House. Proof of that was on display Sunday night, Jan. 27, during Fox News' prime-time "Fighting to the Finish," a "historic documentary" on the final year of Bush's presidency. Filmed in HD and featuring "unprecedented access," according to the Fox News press release, the show was pure propaganda. (I must have missed Fox News' "Fighting to the Finish" special back in 2000, chronicling the conclusion of President Bill Clinton's second term and his "extraordinarily consequential tenure.")
The point is that Fox News years ago made an obvious decision to appeal almost exclusively to Republican viewers. The good news then for Fox News was that it succeeded. The bad news now for Fox News is that it succeeded.
Meaning, when the GOP catches a cold, everybody at Fox News gets sick. As blogger Logan Murphy put it at Crooks and Liars, "Watching FOX News getting their comeuppance has been fun to watch. They made their bed, now they're having to lie in it and it's not too comfortable."
The most obvious signs of Fox News' downturn have been the cable ratings for the big primary and caucus votes this year, as well as the high-profile debates. With this election season generating unprecedented voter and viewer interest, Fox News' rating bumps to date have remained underwhelming, to say the least.
HaHaHaHaHa! Ow, that hurt. Wait, there's more:
The problem for Fox News is that it's the Democratic race that's creating most of the excitement, yet Fox News has been forced to mostly watch the race from the sidelines. That's because last winter, after the network tried to smear Obama for purportedly attending a radical Muslim school as a child, liberal bloggers launched an initiative to get Democratic candidates to boycott a debate co-sponsored by Fox News and the Nevada Democratic Party. (The boycott, powered by Foxattacks.com, was later extended to any and all Fox News debates.)
Oh noes...not the dreaded liberal bloggers! Cutting to the chase--of which more in a moment--the Dem candidates avoided
In the meantime, the rise of Sen. John McCain and especially Mike Huckabee, with his populist streak, has caused all sorts of consternation at Fox News. Even the conservative Weekly Standard took notice. The magazine recently wrote that "A lot of conservatives have problems with both Huckabee and McCain. Last night on Fox, for example, Sean Hannity could barely conceal his distaste for both pols."
And don't even mention Ron Paul's name to the folks at Fox News, who have stepped outside their role as journalists to try to kneecap the antiwar GOP candidate. The most blatant slap came right before the New Hampshire primary, when Fox refused to include Paul in a televised GOP debate, despite the fact that just days earlier Paul grabbed 10 percent of the vote in the Iowa caucus -- nearly double Giuliani's tally.
Paul's Republican supporters became so incensed by the snub that they literally chased Sean Hannity through the New Hampshire night chanting "Fox News sucks!" and captured the scene in a homemade clip that really has to be seen to be believed. (To recap New Hampshire for Fox News: Hannity was pursued by a Republican mob, O'Reilly got into a shoving match with an Obama aide, and CNN grabbed more viewers. Now that's a week to remember!)
Here's Keith Olbermann's video of the mob of Paulbots running after Sean Hannity in New Hampshire, no doubt wishing they could hold torches aloft:
Now that was truly restorative, and I've yet to pop an antibiotic or vitamin C pill. Read the whole thing, as they say. And stay tuned.
Article originally published at Media Matters; photo of stuffed Ebola virus via Wikipedia.
Also at Cogitamus.