I saw “Outfoxed”. Didn’t do a lot for my respect for Bill O’Reilly. There’s an excellent “Shut up!” montage.
Much more significantly, the movie looks at Fox’s 2:00 a.m. projection of a Bush win on Election Night 2000 (the one heavy-breathers enjoy noting was decided by Fox staffer and Bush cousin John Ellis). Did you know that Fox’s call drove a domino-drop of projections by all the other networks in the ensuing minutes? One expert speculates that the projection created an influential climate of assumption about the Bush win, that hung over the Bush v. Gore court battle.
The scary thing here isn’t so much a partisan channel driving the story, but the idea that competition would outweigh considered reporting by everyone. I don’t know enough to even speculate about whether that might have eventually affected Bush v. Gore, but the question reminded me of Jeff’s New Republic article, “Disgrace.”
Meantime, as I type this, Ben Stein is on Hardball saying that it would have been better if the Watergate burglars had not been caught, because then President Nixon would not have had to lie to cover it up. “It was just standard political horseplay,” says Stein.
Here’s a Fox transcript about “Outfoxed” from last month.