Wednesday, July 01, 2009


Media Matters and Talking Points Memo have noted that Rupert Murdoch's media outlets are flipping out in response to Al Franken's Senate victory -- calling Franken crazy, calling the country crazy, alleging electoral fraud. I want to add a detail that TPM and MM haven't noted: at Fox Nation, Murdoch's Free Republic-wannabe message-board site, Al Franken is rarely if ever "Al Franken"; he's almost always "Stuart Smalley."

Fox Nation's been up and running for a few months, and in that time there's been only one thread in which the name Franken appeared in the title ("Court Declares Franken the Winner"). By contrast, we've had:

* Stuart Smalley Needed to Pass Business-Killing Bill
* Will Stuart Smalley Really Be a Senator?
* Did Stuart Smalley Steal the Election?
* Stuart Smalley closer to U.S. senate
* Stuart Smalley Widens Lead
* Not So Fast Smalley ...
* GOP vows WWIII over Stuart Smalley

These aren't comments from message board participants; these are titles given to the threads by employees of Fox, an allegedly "fair and balanced" news organization.

Yeah, sure -- back in the old days, a lot of us used to call Ronald Reagan "Bonzo." But if he was ever called that in news broadcasts on CBS, NBC, or ABC, I'm not aware of it.

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