Are news stations biased?

By Maryellen Anastasio
October 29, 2009

Rather than acting on General McChrystal’s request for more troops in Afghanistan, President Obama declared war on Fox news and chose to send “his” troops to battle.

Fox has been frequently attacked in the past year about its claim to be “fair and balanced” their news coverage really is. Many members of the Obama administration including Anita Dunn, White House communications director, believe that “Fox news almost always operates as the research arm or communications arm of the Republican Party.”

Well, excuse me, Mrs. Dunn, but I would question your credibility on any subject. Especially after you made the comment that Mau Tse- Tung is one of your favorite political philosophers.

At a press conference on Tuesday, Oct. 20, Jake Tapper of ABC news asked, the Obama administration about the recent war that the White House declared against Fox. Robert Gibbs, Obama’s press secretary, had this to say, “We render opinion based on some of their coverage and the fairness of that coverage.”

Tapper then proceeds to ask how Fox is different from ABC, MSNBC and Univision.

Gibbs said this in response, “You and I should watch sometime around nine o’clock tonight or five this afternoon.”
At 9 p.m. on weekdays Sean Hannity, a commentator, is on Fox. At 5 p.m. on weekdays Glenn Beck, another Fox commentator, has his show. They are not reporters nor do they call themselves that.

They call themselves commentators. They make no attempt to disguise that fact. As commentators, they can say whatever they want.

There is a difference between a reporter and a commentator. A reporter strictly reports the news without interjecting any personal opinion or bias. A commentator is a person who responds to events of the day using his or her own beliefs and personal perspective.

Commentary is the expression of opinions or explanations about an event or situation.
It’s interesting how everyone loves to criticize Fox as being a highly biased station when in fact every station includes some sort of commentary.

Look at MSNBC. They have some of the most liberal commentators around who on air are also very biased. If someone can show me that Keith Olberman, Rachel Maddow, Chris Matthews and Lou Dobbs are perfectly non-biased reporters, I would be very impressed.

Fox news has excellent reporters, who report the news with no bias, what so ever. Shepard Smith, Bret Baier and Greta Van Susteren are just a few members of Fox’s lineup. If you watched Fox and were unfamiliar with their reporters and the logo was removed from the corner of the screen, you probably wouldn’t be able to identify you were watching Fox news.

Those who criticize Fox for it being bias aren’t listening to the reporters. They see the Fox logo and they automatically tune it out. Just like those who turn on MSNBC and turn it off because they feel it leans more to the liberal side.

If Fox news is so biased, consider the remarks made by Hilary Clinton to Fox news correspondent Gretchen Carlson, after her unsuccessful run for the Democratic Presidential nomination.
“I think you went on record saying that Fox was the most fair and balanced place during the time when you were running,” Carlson said.

“There were a lot of times when I appreciated the commentators and reporters on Fox who did step up and make that clear,” Clinton responded.

Fox news is the only news channel that is asking the tough questions that Obama’s administration continually dodges. Fox is keeping the government in check right now. They are holding our elected officials accountable for what they say and do. Fox performs a valuable service to this country, a service that other major networks have dropped.

Fox is a station that frequently breaks stories other stations miss or intentionally ignore. Fox is researching the backgrounds of the czars Obama has appointed. They are the station that fairly reported on the town halls that took place.
I’m a registered Independent, and disgusted by both the Democratic and Republican parties.

I watch Fox regularly but I also get my news from MSNBC, CNN, ABC and CBS. It is important that people watch all the news networks and understand issues from various viewpoints.
Michael Clemente, the vice president of Fox, fired back at the Obama administration with this, which can sum up and end the war on Fox news.

“An increasing number of viewers are relying on Fox News for both news and opinion, and the average news consumer can certainly distinguish between the A-section of the newspaper and the editorial page, which is what our programming represents.

So, with all due respect to anyone who might still be confused about the difference between news reporting and vibrant opinion, my suggestion would be to talk about the stories and the facts, rather than attack the messenger.which over time, has never worked.”

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Maryellen Anastasio

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