The Daily Show: Anchor management

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

Anyway, Palin was on a mission.

"I think the mainstream media is quite broken and I think there needs to be the fairness, the balance in there," said Palin.

Really?! You're going to use Fox's actual tagline as a casual indictment of the mainstream media?

You know, Jay, I don't like most soups. I find many of them don't have the mmm mmm and the goodness that I like in the soups.

Alright, what is it you don't like about the media?

"Years ago, I studied journalism," Palin said. "It was all about the who, what, where, when and why. It was not so much the opinion interjected in hard news stories. As long as there's not the opinion under the guise of hard news stories ... that's why I joined Fox."

To be fair, I have to remember what Bill O'Reilly once told me about Fox. I believe he said, "Jon, this whole network is a well-orchestrated sham."

No, that wasn't it. He said that there's a separation between Fox News and Fox opinion. And the network did tell the New York Times that between the hours of 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m., that is their "news" time.

For instance, let's look at the newest star of Fox News, Megyn Kelly. She hosts a two-hour midday show, "America Live." She's in the sweet spot of their no-opinion news area.

Feb. 25's big health care summit was Kelly's chance to show off her news chops. For context, when the Fox opinion people cover health care reform, it sounds like this: "The majority of Americans are calling on President Obama and the Democrats to scrap their health care reform bill and start over," said Sean Hannity.

Now let's see how Kelly, anchor of a news show in the middle of the day, handles it.

"Public opinion polls are against this," Kelly reported. "The vast majority of the public are against this bill."

But the newshounds on "America Live" don't just rely on poll numbers. They back it up by talking to the average man on the street.

And guess what? The only four people randomly selected by Kelly's two-hour, fair and balanced news show all agreed that this bill is a terrible idea.

She was actually going easy when she said the vast majority of people don't want this. Her research shows 100 percent of the American people don't want this.

Over the entire two-hour show during the health care summit, Kelly went everywhere she could to get different perspectives, fair and balanced, on health care - from the people at the old folks home, to a doctor who also thought health care reform wouldn't work, to a concerned citizen who attended a town hall health care meeting.

Now, you may be thinking, for balance, why didn't the news organization interview a wider range of people at the retirement home? Like the minimum-wage custodian, or the part-time receptionist with three children? Or anyone at the home who doesn't already have the benefit of socialized Medicare?

The truth is, under their plan, Fox News isn't allowed to go out of network.

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