Join 3,553 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


Brit Hume's Investment Tip of the Day
July 8, 2005 8:50 AM   Subscribe

"I mean, my first thought when I heard [about the London bombings]...'Hmmm, time to buy.'" Where most people see what happened in London as a tragedy, FOX News' Brit Hume sees an investment opportunity. Media Matters has a transcript and the video in QuickTime and Windows Media formats.
posted by AccordionGuy (69 comments total)

 
I've been on the fence about both Brit Hume, and Fox News, thanks to this, I've now decided they're assholes.
posted by Keith Talent at 8:54 AM on July 8, 2005


I was pretty flabbergasted by that.

The only thing that can be said in his defense is that the question was asked in a specific, financial setting, about why the stock market didn't take upon news of the London bombings.

But still, the man is a piece of work. He does say that was the first thing to cross his mind: buy futures.

Blech.
posted by teece at 8:57 AM on July 8, 2005


I'm filled, filled, with righteous indignation.
posted by driveler at 8:57 AM on July 8, 2005


The context of the complete story is somewhat different. Particularly this bit:

I heard there had been this attack and I saw the futures this morning, which were really in the tank, I thought, "Hmmm, time to buy."

So after seeing the stock market down, his reaction (to the market being down) was to buy because he knew it'd be back up soon.

Reaction to the market being down. Not the bombing.

But that interpretation doesn't make them seem as evil now does it?
posted by dsquid at 8:59 AM on July 8, 2005


dsquid: What would make me interpret the interview more charitably -- since the futures market did not take a sharp downturn on the 6th (otherwise it would've been news) -- would be if there were a video featuring Hume saying "Hey, I see London won the bid to host the Olympics, and the futures market is down. Hmmm....time to buy!"
posted by AccordionGuy at 9:05 AM on July 8, 2005


C'mon. I'm as capitalist as the next guy but people get blown up who even looks at the market? Assholes. That's who.
posted by tkchrist at 9:06 AM on July 8, 2005


Well, conversely, when my IRA performs badly over a period of time, the first thing that pops into my mind is "Hmm, what my retirement really needs 50+ commuter deaths."

I'd like to think that Hume's quote was taken out of context...but it certainly was not. Blech indeed.
posted by tpl1212 at 9:06 AM on July 8, 2005


tkChrist: I remember when I first read about the bombings, that the action of the markets was included in even the earliest reports. You couldn't avoid it as you read the stories coming in. It was on the front page of CNN...
posted by dsquid at 9:10 AM on July 8, 2005


Fuck Brit Hume. And why the fuck is the USUK in Iraq NEWSWFLASH FUCKERS Osama is not in Iraq maybe Brit Hume knows where he is.

Yes, still drunk from last night fuck fox news
posted by The Jesse Helms at 9:11 AM on July 8, 2005


dsquid writes "But that interpretation doesn't make them seem as evil now does it?"

However you look at it it still expresses a desire to make a quick buck off terror and loss of life.

Mind you, that's nothing you wouldn't expect from Fox News anyway, so I don't know why people are so surprised.
posted by clevershark at 9:13 AM on July 8, 2005


I see no reason to play "gotcha" with people's extemporaneous statements when their carefully-prepared positions are idiotic.
posted by argybarg at 9:16 AM on July 8, 2005


clevershark: Actually I believe it expresses a confidence in the resilience of the British people. "Buy now, because it's going back up quickly...they're not going to be beaten by this."

But again, that take on the subject doesn't make Hume look bad, so it's dismissed.
posted by dsquid at 9:17 AM on July 8, 2005


What, like if he didn't make money then the people wouldn't be dead?

People who are in the market look at news in terms of how it will impact the market. How is that evil or assholish? I'm sure there were lots of people shorting whatever companies make the space shuttles after they blew up. It's not like they were hoping the shuttle would blow up. But, when they saw it they certainly realized what was likely to happen with a few companies' stock prices. If the market is what somebody thinks about a lot, then of course all news will be viewed in terms of how it impacts the market.

I don't think you can take that to mean that people don't also feel bad for the deaths. People are capable of far more sophisticated levels of thought than that.
posted by willnot at 9:23 AM on July 8, 2005


But again, that take on the subject doesn't make Hume look bad, so it's dismissed.

dsquid, it's just as easy to say that you are ignoring the angle that makes him look bad. You've flogged you're "it's not really bad pony," so how about giving it a rest?

There are times when you shouldn't be talking about your ability to make money in the markets. In the immediate aftermath of death and destruction is one of those times. Even if you take the angle you want, it's still pretty craven to be talking that way at that time.
posted by teece at 9:26 AM on July 8, 2005


Selective quotations to make Brit Hume look bad. Yawn.

They asked him what he thought about the stock market activity after the attack.
posted by esquire at 9:28 AM on July 8, 2005


Teece -- did you read the article? They ASKED Hume about the markets? How is it craven for him to have answered?
posted by esquire at 9:30 AM on July 8, 2005


oh, look at all the mean people gang up on poor Brit Hume and Fox News!
posted by clevershark at 9:30 AM on July 8, 2005


to make Brit Hume look bad

he does the job perfectly by himself, thank you. Fox "News", too.
posted by matteo at 9:32 AM on July 8, 2005


Hume is not the only one to have this thought, or the contrary. Take your pick.

Fox news is the pits, but no matter what channel you're on, it ain't easy being a talking head, keeping up the chatter, talking extemporaneously as an event like this unfolds. This is a poor turn of phrase, nothing more. If instead of "My first thought was.." he had said, "The first thought of a lot of traders might be..." we wouldn't be talking about this.
posted by beagle at 9:36 AM on July 8, 2005


esquire -- did you not read my first comment in this thread?
posted by teece at 9:48 AM on July 8, 2005


Chris Bowers has the full roundup of Fox's spectacular coverage of human tragedy.

My personal favorite is the one where Arabs aren't considered "regular people."
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:50 AM on July 8, 2005


What a dick and not just because of this.
posted by fenriq at 9:51 AM on July 8, 2005


GUARD: Don't fight it, son .... confess quickly ... If you hold out too long you could jeopardize your credit rating.
posted by fungible at 9:51 AM on July 8, 2005


who even looks at the market? Assholes. That's who.

Some people are into the markets not primarily to make money (well at least, another equally driving factor is) but to have a gauge on what's going on in the world. They view the markets as the best tool to determine what is happening in the now. I'm not saying I'm totally in agreement with that, but this isn't just necessarily making a buck off another's misfortune, so much as there are people who have built their lives around what they perceive to be a huge and somewhat effective crystal ball...
posted by nervousfritz at 9:57 AM on July 8, 2005


MetaFilter: Blaming anybody but the Terrorists p.s. BushChimpHitlerPolPot!!!1
posted by TetrisKid at 10:00 AM on July 8, 2005


I'm not blaming Brit Hume for terrorism, that's just plain stupid. I'm blaming Brit Hume for being an opportunistic douchebag.
posted by fenriq at 10:08 AM on July 8, 2005


This is what happens when you have 24 hour news.

TetrisKid: Which terrorists should we blame for this? I'm sure you wouldn't be one of those people who would just blindly trust just any terrorist organization that claims to have set these bombs, right? Who do -you- blame for them, and why?
posted by odinsdream at 10:13 AM on July 8, 2005


Terrorism is designed to damage many aspects of daily life, including financial. Should the news look at only one side of the event? Mediamatters is pulling at straws, but then again, they do that quite often.

What a dick and not just because of this.
posted by fenriq


I HOPE not just because of this, because this surely isn't proof.
posted by justgary at 10:18 AM on July 8, 2005


C'mon now TetrisKid, terrorists bombed the subway killed people and Brit Hume and Bush are assholes, but didn't bomb the London subway. Watch while I hold distinct thoughts in my head at once without mushing everything together!
posted by tula at 10:19 AM on July 8, 2005


When somebody says, "It's not about the money" it's about the money. And that is the problem with the right's view of "unobstructed" Capitalism. It's not about the money, it's not about the jobs, it's not about people's lives. Here in Charlotte, NC Bank of America buys MBNA. The first words out of the CEOs mouths are 6000 job cuts. The second words are how Bruce Hammonds (MBNA CEO) will find a position in the new company (or get a deal richer than anything the G8 would be willing to hand out). Ken Lewis (BofA CEO) can't buy lunch without 100 people losing their jobs. So to excuse Hume with "He was just answering the question" is the same as saying "It's not about the money"
posted by ElvisJesus at 10:22 AM on July 8, 2005


Well, conversely, when my IRA performs badly over a period of time

I'd talk to Gerry Adams about that....
posted by quarsan at 10:22 AM on July 8, 2005


I just think jumping on Hume for indicating the markets would rebound is a little much when people like George Galloway practically justified the attacks. Why all the anger at third parties? Reserve is for the bastards who actually caused this.
posted by TetrisKid at 10:24 AM on July 8, 2005


This is pretty specious, and unfair. Isn't it the exact same tactic liberals accuse conservatives of using to show they are 'soft' on terror? Taking things out of context?
posted by chaz at 10:26 AM on July 8, 2005


Ken Lewis (BofA CEO) can't buy lunch without 100 people losing their jobs

lmao, that's great
posted by nervousfritz at 10:28 AM on July 8, 2005


who even looks at the market? Assholes.

If markets shut down as a result of death and destruction in the world, we wouldn't have a market. This attack, while horrific, isn't all that different from a typical attack in Iraq that happens about once a month. Not to mention other horrifying events which claim many more lives.

Don't get me wrong, I have no love of Faux News, but I have to echo argybarg's comment above: "I see no reason to play "gotcha" with people's extemporaneous statements when their carefully-prepared positions are idiotic."
posted by robla at 10:34 AM on July 8, 2005


I just think...

So, are you going to answer my question or not? Which terrorists do we blame?

I suspect you have no idea, and would rather us all gather around the teevee and scream at the Evildoers. Prove me wrong. Who do you blame?
posted by odinsdream at 10:35 AM on July 8, 2005


Why do we have to "reserve" anger for only one party?

And obviously no one was jumping on Hume "for indicating the markets would rebound." Stop inventing arguments.
posted by argybarg at 10:37 AM on July 8, 2005


Sigh. The problem is the callous way Hume stated the case.

If you build and maintain trains, and are asked about how the bombings effect your business, you don't say: "I'm going to make a killing fixing this stuff." You say something with a bit more decorum.

Similarly, when you ask Hume about the effect of this on markets (something that should wait a day or two, by the way), Hume should be smarter than to respond "time to buy" even if that's the advice he wants to give.

It's like the homebuilder approaching you as your house is burning and saying "My stock just went up. Here's my card."

But I actually find this:
But you never know about the markets. But obviously, if the markets had behaved badly, that would obviously add to people's sense of alarm about it. But there has been a lot of reassurance coming, particularly in the way that -- partly in the way the Brits handled all this, but also in the way that officials here handled it. There seems to be no great fear that something like that is going to happen here, although there's no indication that we here had any advance warning.
Even more annoying, with all the sophistic, invisible hand, markets-divine-all bullshit.
posted by teece at 10:52 AM on July 8, 2005


I guess I'm an asshole/douchebag, because I thought about cheap tickets to London. It wasn't my first thought, but my mind wandered there fast enough.

I guess I'm also a little bit of a hole because I started thinking of the global political effects, BushCo, and security level in NYC.

I'm generally a very sympathetic person, but I save my energy for situations in which I'm actually involved. Read my mind, I'm a dick, put me on TV, I'll be polite.

I 2nd teece's feelings, lack of decorum is the heaviest charge I could charge him with.
posted by Jack Karaoke at 11:04 AM on July 8, 2005


Yeah, Hume was indelicate. Yeah, I hate Fox News. Yeah, compared to the bombings themselves this is hardly worth remarking.
posted by OmieWise at 11:05 AM on July 8, 2005


Don't blame Hume, blame the system which encourages this.
posted by iamck at 11:06 AM on July 8, 2005


Every station, during the investment/business part of their broadcast, talked about this subject -- if not in such callous terms. Half-listening, doing other things, it was jarring at times to catch statements out of context about the tragedy-as-business, but in context, well... the context was clear. It's their job to talk about the business ramifications of world events, and I'd rather hear honest talk from them about their subject of study than some "those poor people, but let's turn to the markets" every five minutes to ensure that we understand they get the human element. THAT would be offensive.
posted by dreamsign at 11:06 AM on July 8, 2005


What, like if he didn't make money then the people wouldn't be dead?

I mean, the same could be said of grave robbing (what, if I didn't dig him up and rob his corpse he wouldn't be dead?) but it still seems kind of wrong.
posted by BigPicnic at 11:17 AM on July 8, 2005


Grave robbing: it seems kind of wrong

If only Ken Lay, Jeff Skilling, Bernie Ebbers, et al could made that connection
posted by ElvisJesus at 11:31 AM on July 8, 2005


That guy didn't think like me when an event happened, therefore he can't possibly be of any value as a human, and also therefore a bad person.

One thing seems clear from this thread, many of you haven't spent much time around fund mangers and/or traders (and you are probably better people for that). They are all assholes - it appears to be partly what leads to success in that world.

I think this guy's quote, as it has been pointed out multiple times now, was taken out of context and the reaction here is along the lines of what I put in italics.

I think when I was in college, I may have had that reaction.

But these days, I think I'm just one of the assholes.
posted by MrFancypants at 11:46 AM on July 8, 2005


Is it far fetched to wonder if some of the people making money like this knew about the attack ahead of time? I imagine there are a few politicians who had the same thought as Hume. If the people who are supposed to be stopping these events also make money when they occur, then the only things stopping them from putting in a less than genuine effort to prevent such acts are their own conscience.
posted by chowder at 11:47 AM on July 8, 2005


it's possible.
posted by stenseng at 11:47 AM on July 8, 2005


the only things stopping them from putting in a less than genuine effort to prevent such acts are their own conscience

That's one of the scariest things I've ever heard ... but I don't think (hope) we have not sunk so low
posted by ElvisJesus at 11:51 AM on July 8, 2005


s/b but I don't think (hope) we have sunk so low (talk about a Freudian double negative)
posted by ElvisJesus at 11:52 AM on July 8, 2005


Fox News' Brian Kilmeade: London terror attack near G8 summit "works to ... Western world's advantage, for people to experience something like this together"
posted by VulcanMike at 12:58 PM on July 8, 2005


I think this guy's quote, as it has been pointed out multiple times now, was taken out of context ...

This is an odd position. Perhaps you have a different meaning in mind for 'context.' When the video clip starts and ends with plenty of the surrounding conversation on each side of his quote, how can you claim it was "taken out of context" ?

How much "context" did you think was necessary... 40 seconds on each side? Two minutes? Did you really feel, from watching the video clip, that his comment was without context?
posted by odinsdream at 1:02 PM on July 8, 2005


This is much more offensive to me.

Joe Scarboroughmotherfucker closed his show last night lashing out at the media and world leaders for paying attention to such unimportant topics as global warming or world poverty, when they should've been focusing on terrorism. The night before, Joe spent almost an entire hour on the missing white woman in Aruba.
posted by fungible at 1:05 PM on July 8, 2005


fungible writes "Joe Scarboroughmotherfucker closed his show last night lashing out at the media and world leaders for paying attention to such unimportant topics as global warming or world poverty, when they should've been focusing on terrorism."

He's right you know, because nothing says "we won't let the terrorists win" more than letting terrorists set the agenda of an international summit by committing acts of violence.

Joe just doesn't seem like the sharpest knife in the drawer.
posted by clevershark at 1:31 PM on July 8, 2005


The Spin: 'Brit Hume is a monstrous human being whose first reaction to death and suffering is 'how can I make a buck off this?'"

The Reality: The above may be true, but it's hard to tell in the transcript if Brit Hume is saying "my first thought upon learning of a terrorist attack in London was 'time to buy,'" or if he's saying "my first thought upon weighing the financial ramifications of a terrorist attack in London and taking a look at the futures market was 'time to buy.'"

Take a look at The Transcript:

SMITH: Some of the things you might expect to happen, for instance, a drop in the stock market and some degree of uncertainty across this country -- none of that really seen today, and I wonder if the timing of it -- that it happened in the middle of the night and we were able to get a sense of the grander scheme of things -- wasn't helpful in all this.

HUME: Well, maybe. The other thing is, of course, people have -- you know, the market was down. It was down yesterday, and you know, you may have had some bargain-hunting going on. I mean, my first thought when I heard -- just on a personal basis, when I heard there had been this attack and I saw the futures this morning, which were really in the tank, I thought, "Hmmm, time to buy." Others may have thought that as well. But you never know about the markets. But obviously, if the markets had behaved badly, that would obviously add to people's sense of alarm about it. But there has been a lot of reassurance coming, particularly in the way that -- partly in the way the Brits handled all this, but also in the way that officials here handled it. There seems to be no great fear that something like that is going to happen here, although there's no indication that we here had any advance warning.
posted by Fuzzy Monster at 1:44 PM on July 8, 2005


"Buy when blood is running in the streets" -- Baron de Rothschild
posted by alumshubby at 1:54 PM on July 8, 2005


The Spin: 'Brit Hume is a monstrous human being whose first reaction to death and suffering is 'how can I make a buck off this?'"

That is actually a really good job of pretending to denounce spin, Fuzzy Montser, while actually spinning hard yourself.

You paint a caricature of any objection to the quote, so you can play the cool-head objective one. How nice.
posted by teece at 2:04 PM on July 8, 2005


You paint a caricature of any objection to the quote, so you can play the cool-head objective one. How nice.

Actually, teece, I was referring to the spin in the 1st line of this post:

"I mean, my first thought when I heard [about the London bombings]...'Hmmm, time to buy.'"

My point is that is not the actual quote. That's altering the quote to give it a definite meaning: Brit Hume's 1st reaction to London Bombing was 'how can I make a buck?'.

This is the actual quote:
"I mean, my first thought when I heard -- just on a personal basis, when I heard there had been this attack and I saw the futures this morning, which were really in the tank, I thought, 'Hmmm, time to buy.'"

How exactly am I 'spinning hard' myself? What exactly am I spinning? I said it's hard to tell from the transcript what Brit Hume means, and I stand by that.

For the record, personally I do think Brit Hume is an asshole. I think the man's said so many ludicrous things over the years that there's plenty to attack him on without having to twist his words.
posted by Fuzzy Monster at 2:52 PM on July 8, 2005


My intent in the quote was brevity, not to give it meaning it already didn't have or to twist his words.
posted by AccordionGuy at 3:34 PM on July 8, 2005


Fuzzy Monster: Brit Hume is a monstrous human being whose first reaction to death and suffering is 'how can I make a buck off this?'

That right there, that is hard-core spinnage.

What Hume said was callous. The FPP probably overstates it's case (it should probably say something like Hume sees the tragedy as a tragedy and an investment opportunity), the FPP, nor the Media Matters link, say that Hume is monstrous.

The missing context is not particularly helpful, and it is only a click away. I don't think it's all that confusing.

The only thing damning Hume here are his own words. As they have before (false FDR quotes, anyone? THAT was a real example of an out of context quote).
posted by teece at 3:35 PM on July 8, 2005


How do you guys explain Fox's Gibson on France and how they should have been the ones attacked?--Fox News host John Gibson stated one day before the attacks that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) "missed a golden opportunity" when it awarded the 2012 Olympic Games to London because if France had been selected to host the games, terrorists would "blow up Paris, and who cares?" Following the London attacks, Gibson reiterated that the IOC should have selected Paris instead of London because the British should "let somebody else be worried about guys with backpack bombs for a while."
posted by amberglow at 3:54 PM on July 8, 2005


The Gibson/France bit boggles my mind.. How could someone say that and not get called on it? By a producer, wife, friend?

This relates to a recent "Billmon post", it's fashionable now to trade in tough-guy talk. The people he's trying to impress won't mind that he's devaluing human life based on nationality.

Thanks for pointing that out.
posted by Jack Karaoke at 4:48 PM on July 8, 2005


How do you guys explain Fox's Gibson on France and how they should have been the ones attacked?

I explain it as in no way having anything to do with this thread, or the topic at hand. But since it's not good enough for a fpp, you tack on here. A way around the rules, so to speak.

You asked.
posted by justgary at 5:12 PM on July 8, 2005


I live in a small town that's unlikely to be hit by terrorists. But since I'm heavily invested in stocks, an attack would hurt my finances greatly (as it did on 9/11).

The thought has run through my mind (as I'm sure it has many) that if I had more cash on hand then, I could have made a lot of money.

I suppose that makes me an asshole. But I'm not the only one.

I mean, the same could be said of grave robbing (what, if I didn't dig him up and rob his corpse he wouldn't be dead?) but it still seems kind of wrong.

Another analogy would be the funeral home director. He profits off of the deaths of others.

Shit happens and the world reacts to it. That's life. If you didn't know that by now, you probably never will.
posted by b_thinky at 12:26 AM on July 9, 2005


Accordion Guy, you're a buddy of mine and I'd like to see you on this site more often. I know you didn't deliberately set out to twist Hume's words. And it's entirely possible that Hume did say and mean exactly what the shortened quote implies: that Brit Hume's First Thought after learning of the terrorist attack in London was 'Time To Buy,' in which case the sentence Brit Hume is a monstrous human being whose first reaction to death and suffering is 'how can I make a buck off this? 'moves away from being a rhetorically overblown caricature of spin and becomes entirely accurate.
posted by Fuzzy Monster at 12:38 AM on July 9, 2005


Damn. quarsan beat me to the IRA joke.

In other news, what do we have here? Loathsome capitalist greedhead acts like loathsome capitalist greedhead? Woah. Hold the front page.

Next.
posted by Decani at 5:23 AM on July 9, 2005


Fox News slammed over 'callous' line. [The Guardian | July 9, 2005]
posted by ericb at 2:32 PM on July 9, 2005


Brit Hume is not a business/Wall St. reporter for Fox, by the way.
posted by amberglow at 2:50 PM on July 9, 2005


Meh...I got mad at Hume when I read the post, but thankfully read a few comments and was swayed. This isn't really such a horrible remark. You've got Michael Savage recommending, on his show, that we reinstate Saddam Hussein as a puppet king, and you think Hume noticing the market as soon as he sees it is a big deal?

Yeah, that's right, I heard Michael Savage yelling that we should put Saddam back in power in Iraq. What. the. fuck? Why does this man have a show? How is this not worth a thousand FCC complaints?
posted by NickDouglas at 3:43 PM on July 9, 2005


Another analogy would be the funeral home director. He profits off of the deaths of others.

at least he provides a service in return.

sure, there are people who can find profit in human tragedy. but in a case like this, i'd think i'd still rather be a poor sucker than a rich asshole. and i'm not on the only one.
posted by troybob at 10:24 PM on July 9, 2005


« Older The next terrorist attack on America may be perpet...  |  Fat Man Walking.... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments