Actually, what she says is that there weren’t many George W. Bush fans there, but I’ve got a crazy hunch that she doesn’t mean the place was populated with Bob Barr libertarians. This is so unsurprising that it barely qualifies as postworthy, but it’s a nice illustration of the point I made yesterday in the Axelrod post: The White House offensive against Fox News is doomed to fail because most of the public simply doesn’t see Fox as uniquely biased. When you’ve got people like Mika openly admitting which way the newsroom at “objective” outfits tilts, the carping from Axelrod and Anita Dunn about FNC looks every inch the partisan whining of spoiled media darlings that it is. I hope they keep it up and compound the damage, but with even Helen Thomas nudging them to shut up already, we probably won’t be that lucky. In any case, Fox isn’t waiting around to find out: Check out their new promo at Johnny Dollar’s place.
The deeper irony of this clip, of course, is that it aired on MSNBC, which has almost singlehandedly given FNC the cover it needs to go hardcore right-wing among its commentators. From Beck at 5 p.m. to a Colmes-less Hannity at nine, Fox certainly has moved further right over the past year. But when you’ve got the modern-day Murrow across the dial calling my boss a fascist bag of meat and Rachel Maddow showing off her repertoire of teabagging jokes at conservatives’ expense, precisely how much dudgeon is the public supposed to muster at Hannity recycling Republican talking points? Jonah Goldberg made a similar point this afternoon about Jacob Weisberg’s attack on Fox in the pages of Newsweek, a magazine that has itself become more overtly partisan recently in order to attract new readers (unsuccessfully so far). What’s the left’s real beef here? That Fox’s coverage is flavored with partisanship? Or that, unlike their liberal counterparts, there’s actually an audience for it? Click the image to watch.