Friday, December 30, 2016

What difference, at this point, does it make?

As you regular readers can imagine, it's been a trying day over at the Fair 'n' Balanced Network. Fortunately, the Orange Peril has finally told his servants how to think about the day's news:

President-elect Donald Trump said Thursday “it’s time for our country to move on to bigger and better things” after the Obama administration issued sanctions against Russia for its alleged 2016 election hacking.

“It's time for our country to move on to bigger and better things,” Trump said in a written response released four hours after the announcement. “Nevertheless, in the interest of our country and its great people, I will meet with leaders of the intelligence community next week in order to be updated on the facts of this situation."

It's hard to think of a more complete context for the comments of a political elite* -- certainly in light of Fox's worshipful report from earlier in the day:

He told reporters that Israel is being treated "very, very unfairly," maintaining that countries that are "horrible places" never get reprimanded. He refused to directly answer a question about whether Israel should stop building settlements, saying he is "very, very strong on Israel."

He dodged a direct response when asked about accusations that Russia hacked the U.S. election, saying computers have "complicated lives very greatly."

"We don't have the kind of security we need," Trump said, adding, "Nobody knows what's going on." He said he believes "we have to get on with our lives."

Imagine the fun if anyone at Fox had dared to suggest, for example, that some other political elite's comments needed to be understood in a larger context -- for example, BENGHAZI!!!!!!!!!

SENATOR JOHNSON: Again, again we were mislead that there were supposedly protests and something then sprang out of that, an assault sprang out of that, and that was easily ascertained that that was not the fact, and the American people could've known that within days and they didn't know that.

HILLARY CLINTON: With all due respect, the fact is we had 4 dead Americans. Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night who decided they'd go kill some Americans? What difference at this point does it make? It is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again, Senator.

Not to flog the old dead horse too often, but if Senator Johnson was "misled that there were supposedly protests," it's probably because he watched a little too much Fox News himself:
In "context," any grownup first-language speaker of English might think, the former secretary of State has a point: whichever of several concurrent events might have turned the Benghazi case into the debacle it was, we need to suck it up and figure out how to keep it from happening again. Imagine if she had said it was time "to move on to bigger and better things." Or, if your imagination is wanting, look at how Fox covered the reasonably sensible statements she did make.

If you want to have a Christmas truce, fine. (It's been a long year, so enjoy John McCutcheon's version.) I have a reasonable store of Christmas beers left and will happily pour one for any Fox journalist who stumbles out of the trenches toward the happy noise. But the folks who lie for a living need to know that there's going to be an accounting after we put the flagons away.

* Yes, if you are among the multitudes who apparently thought the Orange Peril would lead the rebellion of The People against The Elites, well ... cha-ching!


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