Sunday, January 31, 2010

Robert Reich's Fox Fantasy

This is a guest post by reader Marc:

Andrew Breitbart's Big Journalism site caught Robert Reich in an embarrassing mix of sloppy journalism and paranoia.

In his column at, Bill Clinton's Secretary of Labor blamed FOX News for a 1994 conservative revolt:
In December 1994, Bill Clinton proposed a so-called middle-class bill of rights including more tax credits for families with children, expanded retirement accounts, and tax-deductible college tuition. Clinton had lost his battle for healthcare reform. Even worse, by that time the Dems had lost the House and Senate. Washington was riding a huge anti-incumbent wave. Right-wing populists were the ascendancy, with Newt Gingrich and Fox News leading the charge.
One problem--FOX News was founded in 1996. If FOX News could be so influential two years before it even existed, imagine liberals' consternation now that it's the most trusted name in TV news and hosts all of the top 10 cable news programs.

salon has acknowledged the error; several days later, the Huffington Post did too. So has Reich on his blog, albeit retaining a gratuitous jibe:
(In an earlier posting I included Fox News but that gave them too much credit; their fulminations started a few years later.)
Who's fulminating now?

My advice to Mr Reich: next time you tackle political analysis, stick to the standard Democratic line and blame Bush.

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