Gawker's John Cook yesterday published an exclusive report on a trove of documents from the Nixon Presidential Library tracing the development of Fox News to a 1970 internal memo annotated by then-consultant Roger Ailes. Part of a 318-page cache of similar documents, the memo -- "A Plan For Putting the GOP on TV News" -- called for the creation of a strongly pro-Nixon news outlet operated from the White House which would disseminate partisan news packages free of charge to local affiliates across the country. By coordinating release of these targeted reports with allied politicians and duping opponents into hostile interviews, Ailes hoped to bypass the "prejudices of network news" -- a desire which led him to advocate for some unexpected political policies at the time, from campaign finance reform to anti-poverty efforts. The report comes as Fox is waging an aggressive two-front PR war with perceived ideological enemies -- calling on viewers to file IRS complaints against Media Matters' tax-exempt status for their dogged fact-checking of the network, while on-air hosts launched a campaign to label Jon Stewart "racist" after he called out their record of falsehoods following a critical interview with Chris Wallace (previously).
Who speaks for Jesus? Why are liberal churches ignored by the American media? Why is the religious right given so much play? Media Matters gives credence to the claim that the religious right is overrepresented in the American media, and liberal religious leaders are excluded. I can't remember the last time I saw a liberal religious leader on American TV who wasn't Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson.
Media Matters for America Welcome to Media Matters for America, a new Web-based, not-for-profit progressive research and information center dedicated to comprehensively monitoring, analyzing, and correcting conservative misinformation in the U.S. media. Because a healthy democracy depends on public access to accurate and reliable information, Media Matters for America is dedicated to alerting news outlets and consumers to conservative misinformation -- wherever we find it, in every news cycle -- and to spurring progressive activism based on standards and accountability in media. In the mid-1990s, as a conservative media insider, I saw firsthand (and participated in) the damage done to our democracy when conservative misinformation masquerades as journalism. In my book Blinded by the Right: The Conscience of an Ex-Conservative (2002), I revealed how this misinformation -- deliberately bought and paid for by covert political forces -- enveloped the media, poisoned public discourse, and nearly toppled a president