Fox News settled Dominion’s $1.6 billion defamation suit over the network’s false claim that its voting machines at rigged votes in the 2020 election for $787.5 million. It was clear that Fox knowingly misrepresented facts for ratings and to pander to Trump fans, and the lawsuit already had thoroughly embarrassed the company: all it could do in its defense is argue that the deliberate misrepresentations weren’t malicious. That was a tough assignment; the settlement was prudent. In this op-ed, Washington Post’s media watchdog hack Eric Wemple gives vent to his hatred of the network that declines to join the Post and the rest of the mainstream media in its mission to install a permanent Leftist dictatorship, writing in part,
In its statement, Fox News demonstrated that not even a court record bulging with evidence of perfidy is enough to shame the organization into genuine contrition. “We are pleased to have reached a settlement of our dispute with Dominion Voting Systems. We acknowledge the Court’s rulings finding certain claims about Dominion to be false. This settlement reflects FOX’s continued commitment to the highest journalistic standards.”
(Boldface added to highlight the network’s minimization of the fact that the discovery materials exposed not just falsehoods but lies. Boldface italics added to highlight an unthinkable proposition — firm evidence that the network refuses to learn from any experience.)…the resolution requires a great deal of something that Fox News has in wheelbarrows (money) and very little of something it has in teaspoons (editorial integrity).
Any employee of the Washington Post (or New York Times, MSNBC, CNN, CBS, PBS, NPR, NBC, ABC…) is ethically estopped from sneering at Fox’s lack of integrity. “Fox News was able to keep its audience both sizable and ill-informed,” Wemple writes. If it were not for FOX News, the Post and its fellow travelers would be able to keep the public in the darkness (where “democracy dies”) for their own agenda: Fox routinely covers stories that the mainstream media intentionally buries (Hunter’s laptop, the Twitter Files, Joe’s sexual harassment accuser, Biden’s dementia moments, the administration’s Constitutional breaches, etc.) until they realize they can’t get away with it any longer. It’s a horribly flawed, unethical and untrustworthy firewall against the assault on democracy, but the enmity Wemple exhibits isn’t based on those flaws. It’s based on frustration that Fox stands between the progressive media and the metaphorical goal line of a woke utopia.
Fox ‘s incompetence—and idiocy— was picking a private company to slander and to simultaneously leave a trail of evidence showing that it didn’t believe its own story. The rest of the mainstream media really believes most of the lies it reports, so stating as fact that, say, Donald Trump colluded with Russia, false and damaging as this was, can’t be punished under First Amendment protections. Meanwhile, withholding stories that might have unpleasant consequences for Democrats is just “journalistic discretion,” and beyond legal accountability.
Of course it is disgusting that Tucker Carlson won’t be fired for telling his loyal True Believers that Dominion machines may have helped steal the election while sending off text messages and emails saying the accusation was crap.
But Eric Wemple isn’t anyone I care to hear agree with me until he moves out of that glass house he works in.
53 thoughts on “On The Skunks Calling Fox Black”
Don’t get me wrong, Fox deserved to lose this one… I think the valuation is insane, but they deserved to lose…. But it is… something. For anyone working at the networks that paid settlements to Nicholas Sandmann to publicly chortle over Fox.
Re the settlement amount. Sheesh. How does anyone pay that much and stay in business?
And how much was/is Dominion worth? Did they have a reputation worth three quarters of a billion dollars to lose as a result of what Fox did? Weird.
“Did they have a reputation worth three quarters of a billion dollars to lose as a result of what Fox did?”
The answer is obviously no.
Dominion’s entire business is valued at around 80 million dollars, and it’s not like they suffered any real damages because their systems are still in use. But Fox has deep pockets, and apparently they thought that the avoidance of getting publicly shellacked at trial was worth the difference between a more reasonable number and 768 million dollars.
Right? Talk about lacking self-awareness!
Although I appreciate Fox News’ existence, as with their fellow media outlets, I take everything they say with a large grain of salt. If I’d been in charge of their defense team, I’d have argued, “Your honor, no one takes any media outlet seriously. An assertion made by a comic, satirist or parodist can’t be actionable as slander. [Which may or may not be true, I’m not sure.] Surely, your honor, no one takes anything Fox News says seriously.” And then I’d put all the other media people on the stand and have them go on and on about what joke they consider Fox to be. Seems to be worth trying for three quarters of a billion bucks.
I thought a lot of what the life long Democrat and classic liberal Alan Dershowitz said in the following video is interesting…
Yeah, settling the case will do nothing but spawn speculation, paranoia, suspicion and conspiracy theories.
I don’t watch the news anymore. It’s all propaganda and psyops. I’m pretty sure watching it actually makes you more ignorant than you otherwise would be. I don’t know why they settled this case, and guessing at the motive would be pure speculation, but something stinks.
Oh, I would have settled if I were Fox News. The trial would have been for Tucker, Hannity and others like what Alex Jones went through in his trial. They didn’t want that.
Jack Marshall wrote, “The trial would have been for Tucker, Hannity and others like what Alex Jones went through in his trial.”
So they were essentially protecting some of their cash cows from possible public humiliation?
The more I think about what happened with this settlement the more I think this was a decision by Fox News to put this defamation lawsuit as far behind them as they could and move on as fast as they can before the Presidential Election campaign season get’s under full steam. They didn’t need the whole of Fox News to be somehow self muzzled because they were immersed in extended ongoing litigation and were afraid to say something that could undermine their court battle.
Personally, I think there were also some likely political influences behind the scenes partially motivating the decision to move on as soon as possible.
Good points! But do you have a example of a major news site stating Trump colluded with Russia as a fact?
I’ve decided Amy is just your classic sealion.
If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck….
It could be a number of things…
It could be pure trolling, intentional blind ignorance, intentionally obtuse, sealioning or Amy could simply be…
Regardless of the motivation behind the comment, the comment make her look biasedly stupid.
Or stupidly biased.
It can’t be sealioning if they’ve only asked once.
But no examples have been provided because none exist. News networks did not state as fact that Trump colluded with Russia.
Of course if I’m wrong it should be very easy to produce a single example.
The most appropriately nasty and exhaustive brief against the networks et al was here, by Glenn Greenwald. Can’t wait to see how you spin it.
Now I’m waiting for the argument free ad hominems to undermine Greenwald’s credibility.
But of course now that I’ve posted this, they’ll refrain from looking like foolish hacks to prove me wrong.
Respectfully, nothing in that article answers Amy’s question.
Respectfully, that’s only because you and Amy are committed to denial. This, at the very beginning of the article, would be sufficient for any objective party:
The spectacle began Friday morning at 11 a.m. EST, when the Most Trusted Name in News™ spent 12 straight minutes on air flamboyantly hyping an exclusive bombshell report that seemed to prove that WikiLeaks, last September, had secretly offered the Trump campaign, even Donald Trump himself, special access to the Democratic National Committee emails before they were published on the internet. As CNN sees the world, this would prove collusion between the Trump family and WikiLeaks and, more importantly, between Trump and Russia, since the U.S. intelligence community regards WikiLeaks as an “arm of Russian intelligence,” and therefore, so does the U.S. media.
This entire revelation was based on an email that CNN strongly implied it had exclusively obtained and had in its possession. The email was sent by someone named “Michael J. Erickson” — someone nobody had heard of previously and whom CNN could not identify — to Donald Trump Jr., offering a decryption key and access to DNC emails that WikiLeaks had “uploaded.” The email was a smoking gun, in CNN’s extremely excited mind, because it was dated September 4 — 10 days before WikiLeaks began promoting access to those emails online — and thus proved that the Trump family was being offered special, unique access to the DNC archive: likely by WikiLeaks and the Kremlin.
I’m not playing this game. I have sock drawers to keep.
It’s never enough, is it?
Anchors are slippery things and they know how to mealy-mouth their way around an accusation. “People are saying”, “here’s Adam Shiff to tell us about”, “The US Intelligence community has reported”, but with as many anchors as there are, I think that given some effort and time I could come up with a couple who straight up said the words. But you aren’t asking the question honestly, and if I found an anchor that said the words on air, you’d invariably come back with something to the tune of “BuT tHaT aNcHoR dOeSn’T rEpReSeNt ThE nEtWoRk!”
More telling is what the people who watch those networks have come to believe.
There will never be a better example of this that the fear-porn CNN was pushing at the height of Covid cases. There was a major survey done: People were asked demographics questions, and then for information about their perception of Covid. The question that I think was most telling was something to the tune of, “What percentage of people do you think need to be hospitalized following contracting Covid?”
The answer, at the time, was a little less than 5% We’ll never know the actual number, because not all cases were diagnosed, but all the cases that were hospitalized were obviously diagnosed, so 5% is actually the upper limit. Republicans got the answer generally right, IIRC something like 10% overestimated and 5% underestimated. Over half of Democrats thought that the rate was *at least* 50%. 90% of Democrats overestimated the percentage.
What’s the difference between the populations? The media they consume. Did CNN ever say that you had a 50%+ likelihood of hospitalization following a Covid diagnosis? No. And yet somehow, their viewers overwhelmingly believed that they did.
It’s almost like people can come to a violently wrong conclusion even if you don’t straight-up lie to their faces.
I’m sure you could find similar polls showing false beliefs about the vaccine are higher among Republicans. That seems a lot more serious and dangerous to me than people overestimating the number of hospitalizations. And that’s also a result of the media Republicans consume.
But I asked for examples of the media reporting that Trump colluded with Russia as fact. No one provided any because that never happened.
Correction, Amy asked that and I pushed the point.
Well… First off, Jack did. You ignoring it doesn’t mean that it didn’t happen, it just means that you’re choosing to wallow in self-imposed ignorance.
Second, I just explained why the request was stupid. Your response was to say that Republicans might consume bad media too? Sure. I grant that. What do you think your point is?
No, he didn’t.
My point was that you seemed to be arguing that liberal sources were more misleading in general about Covid than conservative sources, which I find ridiculous. If you weren’t arguing that, you can clarify.
Devon wrote, “Of course if I’m wrong it should be very easy to produce a single example.”
So Devon, what would you think of a piece from a left leaning media outlet that was something like this…
The Trump Campaign Accepted Russian Help to Win in 2016. Case Closed. “Cooperation” or “collusion” or whatever. It was a plot against American democracy.
Is the Trump Campaign Colluding With Russia Again?
Both of those were from the New York Times and distributed across the USA as propaganda fact.
Propaganda comes in all kinds of forms and if your partisan bias happens to be against Trump then there is loads and loads of anti-Trump propaganda to swallow as facts in titles of media pieces without reading or listening to a damn word of the piece.
The ball is in your court to present a nice lineup of rationalizations.
I Googled both of those pieces (because you did not link to them) and they are both clearly labeled “Opinion.”
“Opinion” and “fact” are far from synonymous.
Devon wrote, “I Googled both of those pieces (because you did not link to them) and they are both clearly labeled “Opinion.” “Opinion” and “fact” are far from synonymous.”
I’m glad you Googled them, I’m glad you noticed that it was labeled opinion, and I’m glad that you replied exactly how I expected you would, in other words I intentionally baited you and you bit.
I knew exactly what I was sharing. So, why would I present those two pieces in response to what was asked? Because I properly labeled it exactly what it was, “propaganda fact”, and I even briefly explained how it works. I knew that you were going to be so blinded by your obvious bias and your determination to find something (anything) wrong with whatever anyone posted that you would ignore the details of what I posted and try to make it look like I’m the idiot instead of fully comprehending what I actually wrote and taking just a moment to look in a mirror to see how biased and ridiculous your argumentation has been.
Apparently your bias has made you stupid, so how’s that going for you?
Earlier I specifically asked this question of Amy, “…do you understand what propaganda is and how it’s used?”. Well Devon, I understand what propaganda is and I know how places like the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, CBS, ABC, NBC, MSNBC, etc promote their biased propaganda as the only truth and gullible hive-minded sheeple would swallow it all as fact, they are correct, their cabal of followers are gullible morons. They intentionally twist minuscule facts, extrapolate them to absurdity, employ correlations equals causation thinking, and POOF the biased minds of their readers have been brainwashed into a false sense of “truth” and “facts” via propaganda.
An outstanding example of how gullible some morons are and how susceptible they are to swallowing pure propaganda as fact, is the Washington Post’s Trump’s Lies list which was pure propaganda for anti-Trump biased people suffering from Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS), the problem with their list of lies is that is wasn’t in fact a list of lies, their claim that it was a list of lies was in fact a LIE! The Washington Post was presenting as lies things that were simply differences of opinion on a topics, yes there were some actual lies within the list but the vast majority of the list was not lies unless you’re a sufferer of TDS. I was part of the uproar against the Washington Post because they were literally lying to the public by labeling that which was not lies as being lies, the uproar served its purpose and the Washington Post had to change the title of the page from “lies” to “false or misleading claims”, currently it’s titled “Trump’s false or misleading claims total 30,573 over 4 years”. Here is the kicker; their propaganda worked exactly as they expected it to, people suffering from biased TDS are still to this day presenting that list as Trumps lies, the sheeple swallowed the propaganda they presented as facts hook line and sinker. The list was pure unadulterated propaganda fake news, as in intentional lies presented by intentional liars as fact, and the Washington Post knew it was all a lie.
Side Note: Don’t you dare extrapolate what I just wrote into claiming that I think Trump never lied, that is simply not true of what I think and I didn’t imply that in any way.
Now Devon, you know I intentionally baited you, now you have to make a choice, how do you reply?
The Trump Lies list is an excellent example.
Re-reading that COTD, I see you wrote, “Fake news is a real problem and will be a serious problem during this election cycle.”
THAT was certainly a prescient call!
Thank you for conceding that you did not, and could not, provide any examples of the media reporting that Trump colluded as fact.
He did not concede that. Don’t play that game here. I quoted you a passage from Greewald’s article that in fact did note how the news media reported that Trump’s collusion was indicated by specific evidence—when it wasn’t. If your argument is “Nobody literally wrote ‘Trump colluded with Russia’ in a news report,” that’s just sophistry. You know and I know that “advocacy journalism,” which is all we get today, merges the reporter’s opinion and biases with how facts are framed and stated. The reader, however, is not informed that opinion is used to taint the facts. Thus what are not facts are communicated as if they are. That’s deceit. And those who spin it to deny what is going on are enabling the deception and unethical practice.
I see now that you ignored my quote because—I assume—you didn’t follow the implication that the email CNN presented as a smoking gun was NOT. I guess I needed to include the next section, since you weren’t going to follow the lead:
“There was just one small problem with this story: It was fundamentally false, in the most embarrassing way possible. Hours after CNN broadcast its story — and then hyped it over and over and over — the Washington Post reported that CNN got the key fact of the story wrong.
The email was not dated September 4, as CNN claimed, but rather September 14 — which means it was sent after WikiLeaks had already published access to the DNC emails online. Thus, rather than offering some sort of special access to Trump, “Michael J. Erickson” was simply some random person from the public encouraging the Trump family to look at the publicly available DNC emails that WikiLeaks — as everyone by then already knew — had publicly promoted. In other words, the email was the exact opposite of what CNN presented it as being.”
CNN later retracted the report. This happened because CNN, like most in the MSM, wanted the story to be true, so they didn’t check it. It’s confirmation bias, and its cumulative effect was to warp reporting on what was a contrived claim at the start. As usual, far more people saw the false story than the retraction.
“Indications” and “implications” are not facts. Why not just say “I shouldn’t have said they reported it as fact, but they were wrong to indicate or imply it was?” That your strongest piece of evidence for this is a report that was retracted hurts your overall case.
You’re nuts. The fact that it was retracted defeats your argument: it was false, and CNN had to admit it was false. Had another media source (not Fox) not revealed their lie, CNN might have never backed down.
You’re playing rhetorical games and you’re not even good at it. It was a false report. It was reported specifically to “prove” Trump was colluding with the Russians. There was no other conclusion to be drawn from what was stated: CNN didn’t have to say: “So now we know Trump was colluding with Russia.” Relying on the lack of a redundant statement of what they were already showing was “true” to argue “they never said Trump was colluding” is desperate and intellectually dishonest.
Devon wrote, “Thank you for conceding that you did not, and could not, provide any examples of the media reporting that Trump colluded as fact.”
Please read the following definition of concede…
Concede: admit that something is true or valid after first denying or resisting it.
According to the definition, to concede two things must happen; first, it requires that I would have had to deny or resist the claim; second, it requires that I admit something is true or valid. On the other hand, the informal definition would just require to acknowledge that something is true.
I did absolutely none of that Devon and if you think I did then I suggest you provide factual evidence, as in quote me, or show some integrity and retract your bald-faced lie.
I won’t accept anything less from you.
I grant that you cannot in fact concede a point that you are trying, desperately, to avoid and talk around. My bad.
Devon wrote, “I grant that you cannot in fact concede a point…”
Retract: withdraw (a statement or accusation) as untrue or unjustified.
So you are in fact retracting your lie without stating the word specifically; coward.
Devon wrote, “…that you are trying, desperately, to avoid and talk around.”
At the same time you issue this snide little remark to troll me; you’re far too predictable.
Get this through your thick skull, ya moron; I am under absolutely no obligation whatsoever to discuss what you want to discuss, so you can stick your snide immature remark straight up that place the sun never shines. You’ve been outed as trolling coward that lacks integrity; henceforth, I’ll try to ignore you and your immature trolling. I think it’s fair to predict that eventually you’re going to beak the rules around here enough times, like way too many progressive hive-minded morons have been doing, and get yourself officially banned.
TROLLING: verb Posting inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community with the deliberate intent of provoking readers into an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion, n, to draw attention to themself and for their own amusement.
Devon wrote, “My bad.”
Yup, you’re a bad troll and a coward. You’re grounded, go to your room.
Pardon…Asking one question for evidence of a big claim like that isn’t what sealioning is
Amy Lewis wrote, “Pardon…Asking one question for evidence of a big claim like that isn’t what sealioning is”
Awww, that’s cute; show us on the doll where Junkmailfolder hurt you.
It’s really clear that in the eyes of some of some of your fellow commenters that you appear to be exhibiting a pattern of similar questions and that’s where applying the sealioning term applies for them.
Personally, I think you’ve been showing patterns of trolling (which I specifically defined in a different thread regarding your rhetorical behavior) and the presentation of some of your questions without any supporting argumentation is part of that pattern. Own it.
At least be aware of how you’re perceived based on your rhetorical behaviors instead of showing us the equivalent of a the faux outrage that snowflakes routinely share.
“the faux outrage that snowflakes routinely share [when they’re SNOWFLAKING HARD**] (**H/T Steve Witherspoon)
Actually that hashtag belongs to (#Michael West) from way back in 2018, I stole it from him.
Amy has remained perfectly calm. The only people demonstrating outrage and hysterical emotion are you and Steve.
I’m, and I quote, demonstrating outrage and hysterical emotion?
You must lead a very sheltered existence.
One more thing.
Please provide example/s of this alleged behavior on my part, or waddle your over-sized @$$ back and issue an appropriately contrite and groveling apology for your egregious breach of a fact-based Reality.
To be fair here, I somehow read in Jack’s post about Nicholas Sandmann and other examples of the mainstream media doing what Fox News did, but rereading it shows no references to examples of blatant lies from the ones complaining about Fox.
I assumed Amy ignored all those examples to focus on the one.
Still, her pattern of behavior, of bulldogging onto any inane point in order to own Jack while feigning indifference and ignoring the points he does make, still definitely qualifies
Rhetorical question; do you understand what propaganda is and how it’s used?
It often works by people insisting a claim is true without any evidence, and getting angry when people ask for evidence.
You know, like people are doing here with the “News networks stated Trump colluded with Russia as fact” claim.
You’re somewhat unfamiliar with “propaganda” as well. Here is the definition (from Merriam-Webster):
2. the spreading of ideas, information, or rumor for the purpose of helping or injuring an institution, a cause, or a person
3. ideas, facts, or allegations spread deliberately to further one’s cause or to damage an opposing cause
#3 is what Fox did regarding the Dominion voting systems (allegations spread deliberately to – in this case – damage an opposing cause). #3 is also what numerous news outlets did regarding President Trump and Russia (allegations spread deliberately to damage an opposing cause).
The news source does not have to present the information as “fact”. The definition of propaganda does not require that. It is the intent – spread deliberately to further one’s cause or to damage an opposing cause – that matters.
Amy, all left-leaning news sites did…and they didn’t. It’s rather tricky, because most major networks have replaced actual news with opinion, which isn’t news. Last I saw (a year or two back) was that Fox was the best at reporting news, but only 45% of their content was actual news. The rest was various forms of op-ed round tables and talking heads just giving their opinions. The other networks were worse…something like only 20-30% news.
But when average-Mary-mom or Joe-twelve-pack turns on Fox (or CNN or MSNBC), how are they supposed to figure out which part of the “show” is news and which isn’t? It’s pretty difficult…and guess what? That’s exactly how the networks have planned it out. They use the vast majority of their day blasting opinions at you in a format traditionally used for news, and people don’t know – and can’t tell – the difference. They treat opinion as fact.
That’s why most people that watch MSNBC (and other left-leaning outlets) believe – really believe, and still believe – President Trump colluded with Russia. They believe it to be fact, even now when it has been debunked. So now the people say that all the time: “President Trump colluded…”. And the news stations? They sit back and say “we never once said that as a fact”. It might be technically true that they didn’t, but they broadcast an unfounded opinion over and over as if it were fact, in order to get people to believe it, while simultaneously providing themselves with an out.
It’s why most people that watch Fox believe – really believe – that the voting systems were corrupted. Fox’s problem was they left an obvious paper trail back to their skullduggery. And they were (rightfully) nailed to the wall for it.
It’s why nearly every major news outlet is scum.
From the bedrock Conservative (heh!) HuffPo: MSNBC Almost Entirely Dominated By Opinion: Pew Study
News Content: FoxNews 45 % MSNBC 15 %
Opinion Content: FoxNews 55 % MSNBC 85 %.
Et tu, HuffPo…?
“Amy, all left-leaning news sites did…and they didn’t. It’s rather tricky, because most major networks have replaced actual news with opinion, which isn’t news. Last I saw (a year or two back) was that Fox was the best at reporting news, but only 45% of their content was actual news. The rest was various forms of op-ed round tables and talking heads just giving their opinions. The other networks were worse…something like only 20-30% news.”
This is something I touched on when I said that “Anchors are slippery things and they know how to mealy-mouth their way around an accusation. “People are saying”, “here’s Adam Shiff to tell us about”, “The US Intelligence community has reported””
If you’re looking for the exact words, stated as news and not opinion, then Amy and Devon might (and I say “might” because there’s enough media heads that I’m sure at least one of them fucked up and said the words) have a point… But it’s an irrelevant point. Media are now in the business of concealing facts in opinion. Because they do this, some of them almost exclusively, they spin the narrative to the point where people believe things that are not true. Democrats to this day believe that Trump actively conspired with Russia, when there’s no evidence that was true. Democrats had some really unscientific ideas about Covid symptoms, spread, and vaccines that just didn’t end up being true.
Devon admitted this, but said that Republicans also had some beliefs that are objectively wrong because of reporting from right leaning outlets.
Which proves my point… No one is actually confused by this. The very first comment here was me saying that Fox deserved to lose. As far as I can tell there wasn’t a single comment defending Fox’s honor here. We understand that Fox does this, and that it is wrong. We’re just saying that we don’t want to hear about how muddy Fox is by a pig in a slough.
That’s not answered with whataboutism, or a request for an ever tightening Protagoras level of sophistry. The whataboutism was *our* point, and frankly, Devon, if you missed that, you’re not equipped for the conversation.