The Propaganda Channel

AILESFrederickMBrown:Getty

There's a fascinating, and rather devastating, new University of Maryland study out there, detailing how  misinformed voters were in the last election. Some issues of fact were pretty straightforward: the 2009 stimulus, for examle, was about one-third tax cuts; Obama was born in the US; the recovery had been underway for a while, if anemically; the auto bailout and TARP began under Bush. And yet large numbers of voters believed the opposite and acted on that false knowledge.

The primary fault is with the appalling failure of the Democrats and Obama to comunicate the truth about what they'd done. But what's interesting in the study is how it shows that Fox News, more than any other source, distorted the truth and created a false reality, for all its viewers, Democrats and Republicans. Money finding (I've focused on indisputable factual errors):

Those who watched Fox News almost daily were significantly more likely than those who never watched it to believe that: 

most economists estimate the stimulus caused job losses (12 points more likely)

the economy is getting worse (26 points)

the stimulus legislation did not include any tax cuts (14 points)

their own income taxes have gone up (14 points)

the auto bailout only occurred under Obama (13 points)

when TARP came up for a vote most Republicans opposed it (12 points)

and that it is not clear that Obama was born in the United States (31 points)

Let's be clear about this. One alleged news network fed its audience a diet of lies, while contributing financially to the party that benefited from those lies.

Those who work for Fox News are not working for a journalistic enterprise. They are working for the communications department of a political party. And that's a fact.

(Photo: Roger Ailes by Frederick M Brown.)

2006-2011 archives for The Daily Dish, featuring Andrew Sullivan

The Blacksmith: A Short Film About Art Forged From Metal

"I'm exploiting the maximum of what you can ask a piece of metal to do."

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Riding Unicycles in a Cave

"If you fall down and break your leg, there's no way out."

Video

Carrot: A Pitch-Perfect Satire of Tech

"It's not just a vegetable. It's what a vegetable should be."

Video

An Ingenious 360-Degree Time-Lapse

Watch the world become a cartoonishly small playground

Video

The Benefits of Living Alone on a Mountain

"You really have to love solitary time by yourself."

Video

The Rise of the Cat Tattoo

How a Brooklyn tattoo artist popularized the "cattoo"

Just In