Saturday, October 24, 2009

Obama's War With FOX News Has A Sinister Objective, But Could Backfire

Since taking office, Barack Obama and his Administration have been at war with Fox News. In his latest volley, he likened Fox to "talk radio" because of its opinion oriented shows; with particular anger towards shows like Sean Hannity's America and the Glenn Beck Show. Last weekend, Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod both said, in what can only be an orchestrated effort, that Fox isn't really a news organization but, instead, they have a "perspective". And, then, Rahm specifically issued a veiled threat by saying that other news organizations shouldn't follow their lead. Axelrod added to that by saying the other news agencies shouldn't treat them like news organizations. In not so many words, they effectively gave notice to the news media to not follow Fox's lead in uncovering dirt about this Administration or there could be consequences.

However, this kind of commentary from people like Axelrod, Emanuel, and their boss, Obama, are just off the mark. Every one of the major television news organizations is involved in some kind of "opinion" show. CBS has "60 Minutes" and NBC has "Dateline". The Beck and Hannity shows on Fox are more than offset by MSNBC with their left-wing shows with people like Ed Shultz, Chris Mathews, Keith Olbermann, and Rachel Maddow. MSNBC also has it's token conservative with Joe Scarborough. And, what about semi-conservative Lou Dobbs on CNN? Certainly, NBC's business network, CNBC, has been quite over the top against Obama's economic programs with certain hosts, guest hosts, and guest commentators. What's to stop Obama and his thugs from going after these news groups, also, if they decide that these news organizations, too, are being too FOX-like in their reporting?

The commentaries that I have heard with regard to this silly war with Fox have ranged from Obama being "Nixonian" to Obama being just plain "immature". However, I believe this battle with Fox is just the start of a larger and more sinister war to contain all of this nation's news organizations. I believe the Obama Administration wants to punish Fox and, then, use them as an example to all the other news organizations to stay in line. This is the Chicago way. For example, a Chicago mob loan shark will cut off a finger or break a leg of a deadbeat as an example to all the others who might think about not paying back the money they owe.

But, I think this tactic is starting to backfire. Thursday, the White House tried to exclude Fox from a pool interview with Kenneth Feinberg and his plan for executive pay compensation. But in an "all for one and one for all moment", all the other news agencies stood with Fox by saying that if Fox was to be excluded from the Feinberg interview then, there will be no interview by any of them. The White House then had to back off.

When you think about it, the White House, by implying that Fox isn't on board with them, is really saying just the opposite about all the other news organizations. In essence, they are implying that CBS, ABC, NBC and CNN are all in the bag for Obama. Further implying that these news agencies have become "state-run and state-controlled"; and, I believe that all of this nation's news groups are becoming offended by that implication. Just watch this exchange by Chip Reid and Helen Thomas with Robert Gibbs over a pending Town Hall Meeting in July:

Obama and his Chicago gang should watch out. Over the years, it has been the gumshoes of the fourth estate that have brought down many a President and key members of their Administrations. It was the Wall Street Journal and their article in July of 1922 that opened the door to the Teapot Dome Scandal. It was the Washington Post with Woodward and Bernstein who took out Nixon over Watergate. And, don't forget that that it was Newsweek that broke the Clinton/Lewinsky scandal.

Obama just might find out that this war with Fox could be his Waterloo; especially if the other news groups decide to turn on him, too. The truth about Obama is out there; and, it has been largely ignored. With all his major programs failing and his poll numbers falling, Obama is increasingly becoming a target for the press. I think that Obama would be well advised not to keep pushing because those who were once friendly might actually start exposing his real faults.

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