I waited patiently for Presient Clinton to finish his speech — which every Fox News analyst quickly pointed out was very long and filled with too many numbers — and then I turned the volume up so I could catch the insightful Fox analysis.
I live-tweeted the few minutes that the panel spent on it. And then, happily, they brought in Charles Krauthammer, who explained why the speech would have “no resonance beyond the hall,” why it was “a wasted opportunity in what could have been a rousing renomination speech for Obama” and — his opening salvo — “a giant swing and a miss.”
The thing is, it’s hard to tell if Krauthammer and the others actually believe what they’re saying or if they’re just being paid to say things that the bosses think the audience needs (or perhaps wants) to hear. The latter is just business. It’s detestable business, but business nonetheless. The former is terrifying because it demonstrates a pretty obvious disconnect from reality.
Millions and millions of people watch Fox News — though probably many, many fewer people during their Democratic convention coverage — and they listen to this garbage day in and day out. They think it’s actual news and analysis. But it’s either good business to keep viewers angry and afraid (so they’ll buy the gold that the commercials have long told them to hoard) or viewers are taking their cues from people who seem to be operating on an entirely different plane of existence from the rest of us.
Either way, they have a whole lot of power. And that’s very, very bad.