You know the expression, “Don’t bite the hand that feeds you?” Well, Trump bit the hand of Fox News, and Fox is having a hard time. That might be a bad thing.
Fox News is, at best, a scintilla less repugnant than it was just before the election. As many of you know, Fox was the first network to call Arizona for president-elect Joe Biden – something which considerably stoked the ire of Donald Trump and his acolytes. Trump supporters in Phoenix even started chanting “Fox News sucks,” which is amazing considering the odds are that earlier the same evening their eyes were glued to Fox, their favorite cable news network, with the expectation that Trump would win the 2020 presidential election.
Fox has since made headlines for, essentially, not being typical Fox. It’s cut away from White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany during a press conference because she was lying about election rigging. Some of its hosts even acknowledge that Joe Biden won the election.
Fox is indeed facing competition for the conservative audience now because of its vague adherence to the basic principle of journalism known as “telling the truth.” And here’s why red America’s refutation of Fox might be a bad thing: Fox’s viewers are going to more conservative networks that are arguably more repugnant than Fox.
CNN reports that Fox viewers are now heading to Newsmax and One America News. Newsmax has been fingered as a possible outlet Trump could buy and turn into his own network, and One America News is basically a more extreme and pernicious version of Fox.
Would I rather red America watch Fox or one of these more conservative alternatives? That’s like asking whether I’d like to be tarred and feathered or drawn and quartered. Not much of a choice. But at least there’s a chance of survival with the first one.
That said, let me get back to my analogy from the top. Trump bit the hand that fed him—Fox. Rupert Murdoch, whose media empire owns Fox, is notorious for changing the face of politics the world over, without exaggeration. If Trump turning on Fox causes Murdoch to turn on Trump (which I think would be especially likely if Trump were to start his own network), you can bet on Murdoch winning that fight. Not that I wish Murdoch success in anything, but if he has some role in quashing Trumpism, I can at least support that extremely narrow thing he does. My suggestion: get your popcorn.
Democracy thrives in snarkiness