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It's time – high time – to take Fox Newss's destructive role in America seriously

Chris Wallace is an exceptional interviewer, and Shepard Smith and Bret Baier are reality-based news anchors. Now that we are out of the way, let's talk about the overall problem of Fox News that started out with bad intentions in 1996 and has quickly turned to what is often a propaganda network for a dishonest president and his allies. The network, which attracts more viewers than its two major competitors, specializes in fear and incessant alarmism. Remember the "caravan"? At critical times, it does not observe basic norms of journalistic practice: which, with its ultimately revoked, false reporting in 2017 on Seth Rich, who ran conspiracy theories like Hillary Clinton, had killed the former Democratic National Committee staff because he was a source to campaign failure. Fox, you may remember, was a welcoming haven for "birtherism" – the racist lies about President Barack Obama's birthplace. For years, Hillary Clinton has been continually, unfairly and wrongly founded. And the most high-profile personality Sean Hannity is not just a close trust in President Trump but appeared with him on stage at a campaign experience last year. 19659007] Anyone who paid the least attention knew all of this long before Jane Mayer's 11,000 word survey in the New Yorker magazine was published a few days ago. But since Mayer is so highly respected and the piece so carefully made it an impact. Within a few days, DNC chairman Tom Perez announced that Fox would not be chosen as one of the hosts for…

Chris Wallace is an exceptional interviewer, and Shepard Smith and Bret Baier are reality-based news anchors.

Now that we are out of the way, let’s talk about the overall problem of Fox News that started out with bad intentions in 1996 and has quickly turned to what is often a propaganda network for a dishonest president and his allies.

The network, which attracts more viewers than its two major competitors, specializes in fear and incessant alarmism. Remember the “caravan”?

At critical times, it does not observe basic norms of journalistic practice: which, with its ultimately revoked, false reporting in 2017 on Seth Rich, who ran conspiracy theories like Hillary Clinton, had killed the former Democratic National Committee staff because he was a source to campaign failure.

Fox, you may remember, was a welcoming haven for “birtherism” – the racist lies about President Barack Obama’s birthplace. For years, Hillary Clinton has been continually, unfairly and wrongly founded.

And the most high-profile personality Sean Hannity is not just a close trust in President Trump but appeared with him on stage at a campaign experience last year. 19659007] Anyone who paid the least attention knew all of this long before Jane Mayer’s 11,000 word survey in the New Yorker magazine was published a few days ago.

But since Mayer is so highly respected and the piece so carefully made it an impact. Within a few days, DNC chairman Tom Perez announced that Fox would not be chosen as one of the hosts for the democratic debates.

This was a mild, reasonable step recognizing the reality that Fox News should not be treated as an honest broker of political news. It was not censorship that some bizarre asserted, just a decision not to enter into a business relationship.

However, some of the reactions were spectacular.

Here, for example, NBC’s political reporter Jonathan Allen on Twitter, was careful to say this was only opinion:

“There are plenty of quality journalists at Fox, some of whom have been excellent quizzes at previous presidential dialogues. really, if you can’t answer questions – especially if they aren’t the questions you want to ask – maybe you don’t have good answers. “

Others took it one step further and said the Democrats are scared. And President Trump promised prediction in a overheated tweet .

Given First Amendment protection, Fox News can do pretty much what it wants in the air. It can shake Hannity’s surplus. It can allow Tucker Carson’s misleading scans of immigrants and crime. It can constantly undermine the specialty of Robert S. Mueller III’s Trump investigation.

But for ordinary journalists, suggesting that there are no consequences or even recognition is deliberately blind – and slamming an invisible in-the-belt solidarity. [19659016] What Fox News has become is destructive. To state the obvious: Democracy, if it will work, must be based on a common set of facts and the role of news media is to seek and deliver these facts.

Most news organizations take it seriously, even though they can float poorly at times. When they do, they generally try to correct themselves – that’s why you see the editor’s notes, long corrections, acknowledgments, suspensions, and even outbreaks of curious news people.

Not on Fox News.

The rule at Fox is to stonewall outside requests and to close voices around their rainforest.

And of course to double down on his mission, described appropriately by my colleague Greg Sargent: “Fox News is basically in the spread of disinformation as opposed to conservative reporting.” And this information “is entirely simple about fooling millions into believing that the core functions of our government – regardless of law enforcement or congressional monitoring – no longer have any legitimacy. “

Sometimes, as with Hannity’s rally appearance or Rich reporting, there will be an approved approval that standards have not been met .

But we never know what these standards can be. Unlike most news organizations, Fox News does not seem to have a department responsible for ethics and standards, and it does not really publish its guidelines as some do.

So, Fox News can continue to act as something near Trump TV. It can continue to disseminate information.

But everyone should see it for what it is: Not an ordinary news organization with inevitable screw-ups, shortcomings and commercial interests, sometimes failing to serve the public interest.

But a shameless propaganda equipment, which makes billions of dollars a year, because it runs away in the core democratic values ​​we should love: truth, accountability and the rule of law.

Despite the knowledge of some journalists who should have long ago, the network left in protest, Fox News has become an American plague.

More by Margaret Sullivan visit wapo.st/sullivan

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