USA 2008 31 minutes colour
Directed and produced by Robert Greenwald
Source: NFSA. Production company: BraVenew Films; co-producer, Jonathan Kim.
Ten short extracts from Fox News from 2004 to 2008 that illustrate the relentless barrage of racial hate, fear, suspicion and innuendo that Fox unleashed on the American public with the unadmitted aim of keeping the presidency white.
When the Democratic Party nominated Barack Obama for the presidency in February 2007, Fox News changed its focus from chummy treatment of Bush to concentrated attacks on the legitimacy of Obama’s nomination: that he was not born in the USA, that he was a Muslim (unfortunately for Obama his middle name is Hussein), that he has ‘palled around’ with un-Americans and that he is not patriotic enough (the worst sin of all).
1. Obama (3:33m)
The mud slinging started early: ‘What do we really know about Obama?’ ‘Is Obama more liberal than he says he is?’ ‘His middle name is Hussein. He went to a Muslim school …’
2. Obama Part 2: Spreading the Virus (3:51m)
‘Obama has stopped wearing his patriotic lapel badge.’ ‘ Why no hand on heart on one national anthem occasion?’ ‘ Obama gets the crowds all excited. Hitler got the crowds excited too. Obama sounds like Hitler …’
3. Michelle Obama (3:06m)
‘Hope is making a comeback. For the first time in my adult life I’m proud of my country.’ ‘Hey, Michelle is unpatriotic. Why is she so bitter?’ … A friendly fist-bump between the Obamas becomes a ‘terrorist fist jab’ on Fox …
4. Obama Staffer (2:55m)
Obama freezes out Fox News after it spreads the false story that Obama was educated at a Muslim madrassa in Indonesia. Obama still refuses to appear on “The O’Reilly factor”. O’Reilly is noisily hurt …
5. Black America (3:32m)
Bigoted racial smear attacks on black culture …
6. Decency (4:33m)
O’Reilly lectures viewers on decency while Fox News injects gratuitous sexuality as audience bait: explicit sexual visuals added to serious news. ‘Serial killer targets women’ illustrated by young women in bikinis; a non-story about the Playboy mansion features many bunnies …
7. Iran (3:34m)
Fear-mongering about Iran’s nuclear activity. Fox News demanded a ‘war on terror’ with its 2004 ‘Attack Iraq’ campaign, now replaced by ‘Bomb Iran’ in 2007. Thanks to the Bush administration’s influence on Fox News, 67% of Fox viewers believed Saddam Hussein had direct links with 9/11 and al-Qaeda and 33% believed that weapons of mass destruction had been found in Iraq …
8. Sally Field (0:42m)
Fox cuts Sally Field’s anti-war Emmy award acceptance speech …
9. Chris Matthews Attacks (2:35m)
The Fox Effect spreads to other channels …Chris Matthews, the CNBC host modelled on O’Reilly and a protégé of Fox News president Roger Ailes, ridicules Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton …
10. Non-existent Veterans (2:08m)
O’Reilly rubbishes claims by vice-presidential candidate John Edwards that thousands of Iraq war veterans were homeless and sleeping under bridges.
Although Murdoch helped engineer the November 2000 election of GW Bush and his unbelievable 2004 second term re-election, by 2008 Bush was unable to control the growing public disillusion with the Iraq quagmire and the effects of the October financial crash that would help swing the vote to Obama in November.
— Introduction to the film at the session ‘Documentaries with a punch’, WEA Film Study Group, Sydney, Australia, 11 March 2012
Cale, Matt, Review of Outfoxed http://www.ruthless reviews.com/1670/outfoxed