CNN: Hey, maybe Obama should stop raising Fox’s ratings

posted at 1:00 pm on October 11, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Or maybe, just maybe, he should start acting … presidential.  Granted, CNN has an economic interest in this ill-advised food fight between Fox and the White House, since it seems to have boosted Fox’s ratings in the same manner that Barack Obama’s direct attacks on Rush Limbaugh made the radio host even more popular.  That doesn’t help CNN, but that doesn’t make the spot-on and unanimous advice from Wolf Blitzer’s panel any less correct:

Mediaite calls this a “stunning moment” — CNN forced to cover its rival as part of its political analysis:

Wolf Blitzer opened the discussion by asking David Gergen if he considered it a smart strategy for the White House to openly call out Fox News. “Its a risky strategy,” he claimed, “and it’s not one that I would advocate.” He continued (echoing thoughts expressed on Mediaite) “If you are going to get very personal against the media you’re going to find that the animosities are just going to deepen, and you’re going to find that you are almost going to draw viewers to people you are attacking. You build them up in some ways, you give them stature.”

Gergen makes some sense, but given the recent and rather stunning decline in CNN’s own viewership, one could easily see this as sour grapes. Perhaps more accurately, the fact that CNN’s covering the affect of opinion journalism is the best indication that traditional journalism is one step behind the opinion media. Which is probably the best explanation of why CNN is getting lapped by FNC.

Well, maybe, but that doesn’t explain why the all-opinion, totally non-journalism model at MSNBC has been tanking during the era of Hopeandchange.  After all, if opinion trumps journalism, then NBC’s alter ego should be sailing to the ratings championship.  Instead, it’s dragging anchor, with its viewership in sharp decline during the Obama administration.

In truth, all three competitors practice mainly opinion journalism.  On MS-NBC, they have zero straight journalism, Fox has its Special Report hour and some business news shows during the day, and CNN does somewhat more of it than Fox.  Fox gets better ratings than before (they were consistently beating both before the election, too) because its opinion journalism offers something different than the Obama Hosannah Hours that appear on CNN and MS-NBC.  Fox offers a product that the other two cablers and the networks don’t offer, which is why their audience continues to grow.

With that kind of product line, it doesn’t hurt to have the White House contributing to the marketing campaign, especially for free.  That’s why the White House campaign is ill-advised, and why it backfires on them.


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Errr! Errrr!

bitsy on October 11, 2009 at 5:29 PM

If CNN ran a segment debunking FNC and picked apart Glenn Beck I would be glued. BUT CNN cannot because its hard to beat the truth. Like Homer says: “why even try?”

obleo on October 11, 2009 at 5:30 PM

“Obama Hosannah Hours”

I LOL’d

Good one Ed!

DaMav on October 11, 2009 at 5:43 PM

Perhaps CNN should practice real journalism for a change.

SouthernGent on October 11, 2009 at 5:47 PM

Sorry, Captain. I’m very red-faced…

ConScribe on October 11, 2009 at 5:56 PM

kringeesmom on October 11, 2009 at 3:29 PM
The cardboard cutout loves America,but not Urkel.I would watch
that interview.

Farfed on October 11, 2009 at 6:01 PM

Real Journalism? no, no…it’s much more fun to talk about Fox news and Beck and Hannity rather than talk about the fruitcakes Obama has put in as his czars.

I doubt that there 20% of the American people that would support his czars if they knew what they represented. Unfortunately that 20% include 100% of the main media types

r keller on October 11, 2009 at 6:06 PM

These Obama people are such a bunch of cry baby whiners.

Terrye on October 11, 2009 at 6:16 PM

Perhaps CNN should practice real journalism for a change.

SouthernGent on October 11, 2009 at 5:47 PM

LOL, like they did last week, fact-checking Saturday Night Live?

Speaking of Comedy Gold, an idiot at the White House had this to say today:

White House Attacks Fox News as ‘Research Arm of the Republican Party’

“Let’s not pretend they’re a news network the way CNN is.”

Del Dolemonte on October 11, 2009 at 6:21 PM

The problem that NBC, ABC, CBS, CNN, and MSNBC have is that they lie to support their political positions.

While Fox also has political posturing in some of their shows, they do not lie to support those positions.

As people see thru, and learn of, the lies on NBC, ABC, CBS, CNN, and MSNBC they simply move on.

Freddy on October 11, 2009 at 6:52 PM

Let’s see: We have ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, CNBC, and MSNBC all leaning liberal. You have the New York Times, the Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times. The three biggest newspapers all leaning liberal. One lonely television network, FOX, leans conservative. Yet, the Whitehouse complains about an unfair media.

keep the change on October 11, 2009 at 7:19 PM

Gergen is a moronic turd whosold his feckless soul to the libs.

wepeople on October 11, 2009 at 7:23 PM

Just as an aside, I happened to notice that at 1:20 the news ticker has “French Minister says he won’t resign over sex with boys.”

It’s not clear as to whether this minister was governmental or religious in nature, so I did a quick search. Here’s a link to the story.

http://ca.news.yahoo.com/s/afp/091008/world/france_politics

I wish I could say unbelievable, but apparently these days it’s all too believable.

Niere on October 11, 2009 at 7:50 PM

“I’ll take ‘Fair and Balanced’ for $100, Alex.”

stenwin77 on October 11, 2009 at 8:15 PM

Left: CNN, ABC, NBC, ABC, CNBC, MSNBC, PBS, NY Times, LA Times, WA-PO, Time, Newsweek, AP, Reuters, 95% of Hollywood movies, 95% of TV shows, 98% of the music industry, 95% of the publishing industry

Right: Fox News, talk radio

And somehow in the minds of the diseased liberal mind, Obama’s not getting fair media coverage. Yeah that makes sense.

angryed on October 11, 2009 at 8:38 PM

Let’s see: We have ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, CNBC, and MSNBC all leaning liberal. You have the New York Times, the Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times. The three biggest newspapers all leaning liberal. One lonely television network, FOX, leans conservative. Yet, the Whitehouse complains about an unfair media.

keep the change on October 11, 2009 at 7:19 PM

No. With the exception of MSNBC, those networks are News networks. They are not a bought and sold arm of the Democratic Party. Fox News twists facts and stories in the guise of “News” to promote the Republican Party. Those networks, with the exception of MSNBC, do not actively lie and twist facts to promote the Democratic Party.

Fox News is a Yellow Journalism organization that is little more than a 24 hour Republican infomercial. They blatantly do not report on any news story negative to the Republican Party, twist facts on other stories, and actively engage in trying to set a political agenda.

Decider on October 11, 2009 at 8:39 PM

The problem that NBC, ABC, CBS, CNN, and MSNBC have is that they lie to support their political positions.

While Fox also has political posturing in some of their shows, they do not lie to support those positions.

As people see thru, and learn of, the lies on NBC, ABC, CBS, CNN, and MSNBC they simply move on.

Freddy on October 11, 2009 at 6:52 PM

In a nut shell! Nail on head! Perfect!

Griz on October 11, 2009 at 8:46 PM

No. With the exception of MSNBC, those networks are News networks. They are not a bought and sold arm of the Democratic Party. Fox News twists facts and stories in the guise of “News” to promote the Republican Party. Those networks, with the exception of MSNBC, do not actively lie and twist facts to promote the Democratic Party.

Fox News is a Yellow Journalism organization that is little more than a 24 hour Republican infomercial. They blatantly do not report on any news story negative to the Republican Party, twist facts on other stories, and actively engage in trying to set a political agenda.

Decider on October 11, 2009 at 8:39 PM

Did you get dropped on your head as a baby?

Griz on October 11, 2009 at 8:48 PM

They gave up on Kool-Aid a decade ago. It’s just anti-freeze nowadays.

Coronagold on October 11, 2009 at 8:51 PM

I watch Fox News, every day, but I would LOVE to see the White House aggressively go after Fox, by at least TRYING to refute facts and address issues, not fall back on cheap political rhetoric.

If Barry can’t handle that, he should hitch up his skirt and get off the stage.

Star20 on October 11, 2009 at 9:03 PM

Heh. As we say in the South, Wynn had Gov Granholm “batting her eyes like a frog in a hailstorm”.

d1carter on October 11, 2009 at 2:39 PM

I thought I saw smoke coming out of Granhom’s ears. That was the best smack down evah!

kringeesmom on October 11, 2009 at 9:08 PM

Farfed on October 11, 2009 at 6:01 PM

Makes me chuckle. One of the best FOX news moments ever was when Sean Hannity brought out the Ayers book that had the Sirhan Sirhan dedictation, and the look on Pat Goodells face… priceless.

kringeesmom on October 11, 2009 at 9:18 PM

How much longer can these networks continue to have lousy ratings?

I bet they figured they’d be doing better by now as His One-ness would be kicking some serious booty by now and all would be peaches and cream and no one would feel they needed to watch Fox News.

Also, they didn’t count on Glenn Beck’s success.

Dr. ZhivBlago on October 11, 2009 at 9:59 PM

Is this VRWC?

antisocial on October 11, 2009 at 10:43 PM

Decider do you just want one media and that it has to be controlled by a leftist gov’t? You accuse Fox omitting lots of stories but you fail to mention the state run media when it does it all the time.

garydt on October 11, 2009 at 10:58 PM

Meanwhile, the SRM kneepad line goes off into infinity.

Palin/Chris Wallace 2012

Sapwolf on October 11, 2009 at 11:50 PM

Decider on October 11, 2009 at 8:39 PM

Hey a-hole,

Which network actually did a ‘fact-check’ on an SNL skit that was only mildly funny about Obama?

You people are complete ivory-tower goofballs.

Sapwolf on October 11, 2009 at 11:53 PM

Fox really should look into an SNL show that just kicks on everybody else on Sat. nights.

They could do it.

And yes, I’m selfish in that I want Obama’s head to split when it debuts.

Sapwolf on October 12, 2009 at 12:01 AM

It seems to me this WH has done a lot of unwise stuff regarding media figures this year.

It doesn’t work. But it’s clearly their strategy.

AnninCA on October 12, 2009 at 1:25 AM

Decider on October 11, 2009 at 8:39 PM

Fox News twists facts and stories in the guise of “News” to promote the Republican Party.

Could you please provide an example?

Fox News is a Yellow Journalism organization that is little more than a 24 hour Republican infomercial.

Could you please provide an example?

They blatantly
do not report on any news story negative to the Republican Party.

Could you please provide an example?

DSchoen on October 12, 2009 at 3:46 AM

President Nixon and Mother Teresa

As a captive audience, I watch CNN in airports and other places. I heard a black lady say to a guy “I wonder what FOX would say about this?”.

Notice that this boring CNN report never considered the overall absence themes which might be interesting or valuable to an audience that has a need to understand both the promise and pitfalls of a very radical and inept gang in the government. Note to the media: “how are these guys screwing up/screwed up?” might be more germaine to journalism than fact checking SNL. You know, pretend The One is Richard Nixon.

FOX is not that unfair with The One. Just because they were not secretely disappointed that He did not make the latest group which Pope Benedict moved toward Sainthood doesn’t mean that they are a Republican attack pulpit. If they were, the running letters at the bottom of the screen would be asking over and over, whay are we talikg about healthcare with unemployment at 9.7%, the total deficit numbers, how long will Rangel be protected by the Dems, still waiting for a decision on Afghan strategy after 75 days…

IlikedAUH2O on October 12, 2009 at 7:01 AM

With that kind of product line, it doesn’t hurt to have the White House contributing to the marketing campaign, especially for free. That’s why the White House campaign is ill-advised, and why it backfires on them.

Definitely a candidate for Obamatuerism of the day.

MarkTheGreat on October 12, 2009 at 8:56 AM

One neglected poll. Every month people buy Ford and Asian cars. The sales of Government motors are down 45%. Why doesn’t he take over some hospitals for us to stop going to?

seven on October 12, 2009 at 9:39 AM

Hey, doesn’t anybody like my cardboard cutout interview idea?? I’m laughing all over myself??

I loved Chris Wallace this morning, be sure to catch the re-run!

kringeesmom on October 11, 2009 at 3:29 PM

I got to the party late, but I do love your idea. Shop it around to Greg Gutfield and/or Glenn Beck. They are the only two that would probably be interested. I don’t see the rest of them that interested in having fun at Obama’s expense. SNL just can’t bring themselves out of the closet! They have just cracked the door a tiny bit.

BetseyRoss on October 12, 2009 at 10:16 AM

Hey, if David Gergen is talking I’m there with my notepad.

SteveMG on October 11, 2009 at 1:12 PM

LOL!

Touche for skewering the touchy!

profitsbeard on October 11, 2009 at 2:52 PM

You got there first, pb . . . it’s the voice that gets me.

It is that rare combination of deep and whiny. And everything he has to say seems so brownish-gray in tone.

Trochilus on October 12, 2009 at 7:43 PM

Comment pages: 1 2