Saturday, February 9, 2013

Fox News: A Year of Misinformation


Alternet.org's Steven Hseigh writes about a subject dear to all of our hearts in a memorial, "12 Months of Misinformation: Explaining Fox News’ ‘Record Low’ Credibility," commenting on the "...new poll (that) reveals that Americans distrust Fox more than ever. Here's why."

But first, the poll from PPP:

"February 06, 2013

"4th Annual TV News Trust Poll

"PPP's annual poll on TV news finds that there's only one source more Americans trust than distrust: PBS. 52% of voters say they trust PBS to only 29% who don't trust it. The other seven outlets we polled on are all distrusted by a plurality of voters.

"Just like its actual ratings, Fox News has hit a record low in the four years that we've been doing this poll. 41% of voters trust it to 46% who do not. To put those numbers into some perspective the first time we did this poll, in 2010, 49% of voters trusted it to 37% who did not. Fox has maintained most of its credibility with Republicans, dropping just from 74/15 to 70/15 over that period of time. But it's been losing what standing it had with Democrats (from 30/52 to 22/66) and independents (from 41/44 to 32/56).

"We find once again this year that Democrats trust everything except Fox, and Republicans don't trust anything other than Fox. Democrats put the most faith in PBS (+61 at 72/11), followed by NBC (+45 at 61/16), MSNBC (+39 at 58/19), CBS (+38 at 54/16), CNN (+36 at 57/21), ABC (+35 at 51/16), and Comedy Central (+10 at 38/28). Out of the non-Fox channels Republicans have the most faith in PBS at -21 (27/48), followed by NBC (-48 at 18/66), CNN (-49 at 17/66), ABC (-56 at 14/70), MSNBC (-56 at 12/68), CBS (-57 at 15/72), and Comedy Central (-58 at 8/66).

"When it comes to asking Americans which single outlet they trust the most and least out of the ones we polled on, Fox News once again wins both honors. 34% say it's the one they trust the most, compared to 13% for PBS, 12% for CNN, 11% for ABC, 8% for MSNBC, 6% for CBS, and 5% each for Comedy Central and NBC. Fox News is the choice of 67% of Republicans, while Democrats basically split their allegiances four ways between ABC and CNN, both at 17%, and MSNBC and PBS, both at 16%.

"Even more Americans identify Fox News as the outlet they trust the least- 39% give its that designation to 14% for MSNBC, 13% for CNN, 12% for Comedy Central, 5% for ABC and CBS, 3% for NBC, and 1% for PBS. 60% of Democrats give it their lowest marks while Republicans split between MSNBC (24%), CNN (19%), and Comedy Central (14%) on that front.

Full results here"



And the reason for the calamitous drop, the drop described as "Just like its actual ratings, Fox News has hit a record low in the four years that we've been doing this poll. 41% of voters trust it to 46% who do not. To put those numbers into some perspective the first time we did this poll, in 2010, 49% of voters trusted it to 37% who did not?"  From the article at Alternet.org (with our highlighting):

"After another year of airing misinformation and embarrassing gaffes, it’s no surprise that Fox News continues to lose Americans’ trust:

"January 2012 - Fox Peddles Racist “Food Stamp” Rhetoric

"Echoing Newt Gingrich’s disgusting nickname for the president, several Fox personalities peddled the misinformation that Obama is giving out more “freebies” than any other administration. As Media Matters reported, that’s false. In actuality, George W. Bush oversaw the largest increase in food stamp usage. Evidently, coded racism doesn’t bode well for credibility.

"February 2012– Fox Pundit Says Military Women Should “Expect” to be Raped

Fox News pundit Liz Trotta learned that Americans aren’t too fond of victim blaming. Responding to news that women would be working closer to front lines, Trotta implied that women should “expect” to be raped more if they want to serve this country.

"March 2012— Fox Pundit Claims “Hoodie” Killed Trayvon Martin

"Geraldo Rivera started a national movement this year when he suggested that Trayvon Martin died because of what he was wearing, not the overzealous vigilantism of a George Zimmerman or outrageous “stand your ground” laws.

"April 2012 — Fox Host Misinforms on the Environment

"Everyone knows Fox News has an appalling record on the environment. As the Union of Concerned Scientists revealed, Fox News has misled the American public in 93 percent of their climate change coverage. And in April, host Greg Gutfeld uttered a slew of environmental falsehoods, including the claim that the world plants more trees than it cuts down.

"May 2012 — Fox Appeals to Jingoism and Lies About Obama

"Media Matters reports a full on assault against President Obama for allegedly failing to express his gratitude to the Navy SEALs who killed Osama bin Laden.

"June 2012 — Fox Ignores Context of “Private Sector is Doing Fine”

“'The private sector is doing fine.' Remember when Fox News used this quote from the president to demonize him as an out of touch socialist without including the context that private sector jobs were in fact growing at a higher rate than the public sector?

"July 2012 — Fox Peddles Voter Fraud Myths

"Despite widespread reports on the rarity of voter fraud in this country, Fox’s Patti-Ann Brown willingly referred to Pennsylvania’s racist voter ID law as an “attempt to fight voter fraud.

"August 2012— Fox Chooses not to Talk About Todd Akin

"In August, Rep. Todd Akin found a national audience when he claimed that women’s bodies are biologically tuned to abort pregnancies resulting from “legitimate rape.” As Think Progress reports, Fox News barely covered the story.

"September 2012— The Polls Are Rigged…

"When the polls weren’t in Mitt Romney’s favor, Fox News pundits joined conservative conspiracy theorists claiming that someone must’ve been cooking the numbers.

"October 2012— So Let’s Ignore Them…

"The now-terminated pundit Dick Morris predicted that Mitt Romney would win in a “landslide.”

"November 2012— And Refuse to Believe When the Polls are Vindicated

"Karl Rove’s meltdown on election night was probably the most notable Fox News moment of 2012.

"December 2012– Fox Proves Itself Incapable of Drawing an Accurate Graph

"Media Matters caught Fox misleading the American public about the unemployment rate with a completely dishonest graph.

"Fox News is already off to a great, credibility damaging start in 2013. Here’s to another year of misinformation, disgusting deceit and inflammatory speech!"



And what kind of "news" will Fox bring us in the coming year of "misinformationdisgusting deceit and inflammatory speech?"

Misininformation: "Fox Promotes Debunked Claim That Scientists Exaggerated Climate Change" here --> http://mediamatters.org/blog/2013/01/29/fox-promotes-debunked-claim-that-scientists-exa/192431.

Disgusting Deceit: "Fox News Adopts Pedophilia Narrative While Covering Boy Scouts' Gay Ban" here --> http://mediamatters.org/blog/2013/01/29/fox-news-adopts-pedophilia-narrative-while-cove/192450.

And Inflammatory Speech: "A Look Back: Erick Erickson's History Of Inflammatory And Inaccurate Statements" here --> http://mediamatters.org/research/2013/01/29/a-look-back-erick-ericksons-history-of-inflamma/192433.

Although it's a little gut-churning, here is a sample of Erickson's lies and hatred:

"RACIAL ATTACKS

"Erickson Endorsed Whites-Only Scholarship, Suggested Women Have Always Had Equal Opportunity. On the March 1, 2011, edition of CNN Newsroom, Erickson endorsed white-men-only scholarships provided by a Texas group called "Former Majority Association for Equality," saying, "If we're going to get rid of scholarships for African-Americans and get rid of scholarships for Hispanics and get rid of scholarships for Asians and get rid of scholarships for women, then let's get rid of the scholarships. But if we're not going to get rid of those, then let's keep this one." Erickson then suggested that women, Hispanics, and Asians have not been historically disadvantaged in America. [CNN, CNN Newsroom, 3/1/11, via Media Matters]

"Erickson: 'If It Weren't For Constitutionally Mandated Racial Gerrymandering,' There'd Be Fewer Congressional Dems In South. On the September 16 edition of CNN's John King USA, Erickson said that '[i]f it weren't for constitutionally mandated racial gerrymandering in the south, you'd probably have even fewer Democrats down there.; [CNN, John King USA, 9/16/10]

"Erickson: Turn New Black Panthers' Case Into Willie Horton Ad. In a July 13, 2010, blog post headlined, "[New Black Panther Party member] King Samir Shabazz Should Be 2010's Willie Horton," Erickson wrote: "Republican candidates nationwide should seize on this issue. The Democrats are giving a pass to radicals who advocate killing white kids in the name of racial justice and who try to block voters from the polls." Erickson added: "The Democrats will scream racism. Let them. Republicans are not going to pick up significant black support anyway." [Media Matters, 7/13/10]

"ATTACKS ON WOMEN

"Erickson Compared First Night Of Democratic National Convention To The 'Vagina Monologues.' Referring to the first night of the Democratic National Convention, during which first lady Michelle Obama and other women leaders appeared, Erickson tweeted, 'First night of the Vagina Monologues in Charlotte going as expected'

Fox "News," Faux News, Fox Snooze, it's all real news to the Conservatives, but is a travesty performed by the Conservative leadership on all of us and Fox should be compelled to change its name to one that defines its real nature:  the propaganda arm of the Conservative leadership, not limited to lies and the spewing of hatred in order to bring about the New American Feudalism that the Conservatives so badly want, and have been intent on achieving since the country's creation.


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"There is no sin except stupidity."

Oscar Wilde, The Critic as Artist

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