REMEMBER PEARL HARBOR
The four-minute Fox & Friends anti-Obama ad may not show a greater degree of contempt shown for the president than the show's typical content, and, as an ad, it may not be unusually harsh by contemporary right-wing standards (it's just longer, like a turgid metal anthem done in a prolonged, elephantine live version), but it still crosses a line. We put different types of political speech in different pigeonholes, or we did until now -- Fox & Friends is hours every day of anti-Democratic, anti-liberal chatter, but it's chatter. Political ads are supposed to appear in ad slots; they're heavy, concentrated doses of manipulative overkill, and we expect them to be where they traditional are. This crossed over. It was product placement.
Now, when I think of Fox crossing this line, I think of this news story from 2010:
Fox News has won a front-row seat in the White House press room after the shakeup following the retirement of the longest-serving journalist in the presidential residence....
The White House Correspondents Association agreed to move the Associated Press to the front row, center seat, which had been held by Helen Thomas, who retired in June....
The new arrangement allowed the conservative Fox News to snag the front row seat previously occupied by AP. National Public Radio got the second row seat previously held by Fox, next to Bloomberg News.
"It was a very difficult decision," said the association, which is a self-governing body of the correspondents assigned to the White House.
"The board received requests from Bloomberg and NPR in addition to Fox for relocation to the front row and felt all three made compelling cases. But the board ultimately was persuaded by Fox's length of service and commitment to the White House television pool." ...
T%he White House should respond to this Fox & Friends attack ad by bouncing Fox -- and I mean bouncing Fox altogether. No front row, no row at all. The lefty groups that tried to keep Fox out of the front row, saying it "is a right-wing propaganda operation, not a legitimate news organization," have been proven right -- and not for the first time today.
It's war. The White House won't shoot back, but it should. Do that, and then keep fighting. Fox can't be appeased.