Tags: Fox | CNN | Lite?

Is Fox CNN Lite?

Wednesday, 02 January 2002 12:00 AM

Fox and CNN are fixated on beating each other's brains out. Not an hour goes by on either network that some anchor doesn't take a dig at his rival.

It all goes back to Ted Turner's disgusting comments about Rupert Murdoch several years ago. Ever since then, FNC Chairman Roger Ailes has had one mandate - and

FNC has made steady progress by contrasting itself with CNN's obvious leftist bias. The now-famous "We report, you decide" motto was brilliant in its simple design. Hundreds of thousands of news watchers had no alternative until FNC came along.

One look at Fox was like a breath of fresh air. No liberal slant, no spinning and no eyebrow-raised cynicism about Republicans.

Ailes is one of the most brilliant people ever to work in TV - and politics, too. Combative, funny, quick and tough, Ailes knows that his assignment is to beat CNN. Period!

And that is exactly the problem.

So obsessed with CNN is the entire Fox News Channel team that it is losing sight of what made it gain in the first place:

First by hiring Geraldo Rivera, the most liberal, phony, self-important buffoon on TV, and now the CNN-created Greta Van Sustern, Fox is

Where is the differentiation?

Greta is a defense lawyer. Generally no group has been more liberal or supportive of the left wing of the Democratic Party than defense lawyers. She could not have lasted 10 years on CNN unless she was way out there. Putting her on Fox at 10 every night blurs the distinction between the two rival cable news networks.

Why is Ailes doing this?

1) Spite. He is angry that CNN "stole" Paula Zaun away last August. Luring Greta away is payback.

2) He hasn't been able to find a suitable 10 p.m. host since Zaun left. Rita Cosby and Linda Vester vied for the post but have now lost to Greta.

3) A two-fer. Taking Greta away hurts CNN because now it has to find a suitable replacement - and in the short term perhaps that brings some previous CNN/Greta viewers over to Fox. That assumes that Greta had much of a following - which is doubtful.

4) When the Yankees lured Jason Giambi away from the Oakland A's last month it was George Steinbrenner's way of hurting Oakland

CNN, if it were smart, would can its liberal lineup such as Jeff Greenfield and move to the right to pre-empt the Fox line-up.

It hasn't done this yet, as its corporate culture is so hopelessly left wing that it is incapable of even recognizing the trouble it is in.

It flirted with Rush Limbaugh, which showed it knew it needed to make a try for conservative viewers. But since then it has largely ignored the Right - to its peril.

The shame of it all is that news should have

Let us hope Fox returns to its unbiased outlook - and moves away from its obsession with CNN - before that obsession consumes it.

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Fox and CNN are fixated on beating each other's brains out. Not an hour goes by on either network that some anchor doesn't take a dig at his rival. It all goes back to Ted Turner's disgusting comments about Rupert Murdoch several years ago. Ever since then, FNC...
Fox,CNN,Lite?
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2002-00-02
Wednesday, 02 January 2002 12:00 AM
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