Sure, Fox News may have crossed a few ethical lines this week with that “not authorized” attack ad on President Obama (though, perhaps, no more than MSNBC did with a similar anti-Romney ad). But as to the substance, attacking the President for not delivering on his promises of hope and change is tame compared to pretty much everything else the network has (with authorization, I presume) hit him with over the past couple of years.
In no particular order:
He uses too many big words, like “allegedly”: Alisyn Camerota filling in on Fox & Friends, on the president’s speech after the so-called “Underwear Bomber” attempted to bomb an airplane on Christmas Day, 2009: “You rarely see him getting fired up, but in this instance the use of the term ‘allegedly,’ to your point, that’s Harvard Law School talking, that’s not commander-in-chief talking. So he needs to you know change his, some would say, rhetoric.”
He wears “fancy pants”: Gretchen Carlson of Fox & Friends, on the President’s visit to the Gulf Coast after the BP oil spill in 2010: “When he was standing at the shoreline there, he had on fancy pants and a fancy shirt. Look, what other critics are saying, is that 80 percent of public perception is image. Not what you say. And he should have had on, like what Thad Allen has on next to him. Something that looked like he was a little bit more at the scene.”
He uses ‘chintzy’ paperclips: Don’t judge a piece of legislation by its cover, the gang at Fox & Friends suggested; judge it by its paperclip. Or, at least, that’s how they examined the president’s September jobs bill after he used a “chintzy clip” to hold it together.
He bows too much: A picture of the president was snapped in which he appeared to bow to the Mayor of Tampa. If you recall, at the time it was a very big deal that the president bowed to a couple of foreign dignitaries like King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, because that makes him a Muslim or something. Fox & Friends was on the case, running a segment in February, 2010 called “Other Bows By Obama.” But: “It could be a Pilates thing,” host Steve Doocy offered.
He is “unhinged” and “obsessed with Fox News”: Sean Hannity in 2010 cited “reliable” Democratic sources in the White House who said that the Obama is “unhinged, that he is detached, that he’s losing it, he’s obsessed with critics, very specifically obsessed with Fox News.”
He likes Ramadan a bit too much: The President put out a statement in honor of Ramadan last August. Gretchen Carlson on Fox & Friends cited “some people” who take issue with the fact that the president didn’t put out a statement for Easter. “Is this an outreach to the Muslim world, and why isn’t there an outreach to the Christian world?”
He hosts ‘radical’ rappers like Common: When the rapper Common was invited to the White House last May, Fox News got really, really angry, because sometimes Common uses bad words in his music. Sean Hannity said, on his show: “This is not the guy that you invite to the White House for a poetry reading. This is not the guy we want our kids to listen to.” The president “goes back to his radical roots again and again and again: Ayers, Wright, Pflager.”
He is a racist: Glenn Beck on Fox & Friends in 2009: Obama has “a deep-seated hatred for white people or the white culture.”
He is not racist, because it all comes from his religion: Glenn Beck backtracked in 2010, saying that the president doesn’t necessarily have a deep-seated hatred for white people.” He has a different problem: “I didn’t understand really his theology. His viewpoints come from liberation theology. That I think is what at the gut level I was sensing, and I miscast it as racism.”
He’s like a late-night infomercial host: After Obama’s high-profile jobs speech in September in which he implored Congress to pass his jobs bill, Steve Doocy on Fox & Friends likened the President’s tone to “kind of almost like one of those guys on a late-night infomercial. Act before midnight!”
More or less over-the-line than the ad? You be the judge: