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This Just In: Geraldo And Fox News Are Full Of Shit

By Robert Pagani

Sick of his increasing irrelevance on CNBC, aging Lothario Geraldo Rivera quit his low-rated show to become a "war correspondent" for Fox News Channel.  Geraldo Rivera and FNC: a marriage made in Heaven.  Unlike CNN, which founder Ted Turner intended to "have no stars" but would put the news first, FNC, from its inception, was loaded with "personalities".  Yes, CNN has changed over the years, but Fox News Channel was intended from the very beginning to be a showcase for overblown egos.  In the Thanksgiving Day parade of News People Who Love Themselves A Wee Bit Too Much, Rivera is the most bloated balloon of them all.

Like Bill O'Reilly and Sean Hannity (two other FNC "stars"), Rivera has The Formula figured out: No matter what the story is, make sure that the subject is you.  If I had a dime for every time Bill "I'm not a Republican even if I sound like an RNC spokesman" O'Reilly claimed that some politician was "afraid" to come on his show (because he's such a hard-hitting journalist who allows "no spin", you see), I'd be typing this in my mortgage-free villa on the French Riviera.

There are those of us who have been laughing at Rivera's pathetic attempts to make the War On Terrorism into his personal spotlight.  Here's Geraldo packing a six-shooter (to the dismay of his fellow reporters who feel that it compromises their ability to claim neutrality and endangers their lives).  Here's Geraldo in the thick of the action with a sniper's bullet whizzing over his head.  Here's Geraldo threatening to shoot Osama binLaden on sight.  Yup, it's Geraldo's War, you just get to pay for it.  It was entertaining, in a pathetic way, to watch Rivera use FNC as a kind of Video Viagra to regain his fading manhood.  The laughter's stopped now, though.  He's crossed the line from asshole to liar.

In a December 6th on-air report, Gung Ho-raldo reported that he became emotional and choked-up while standing on the "hallowed" ground where "friendly fire took so many of our, our men and the mujahedeen yesterday."  So moved by the spectacle was Rivera that he recited the Lord's Prayer.  A lovely, touching story--if only it had happened.

The Baltimore Sun reported on December 15th that Rivera had actually been several hundred miles from the site of the slaughter on Dec. 5th.  He admitted it to them via videophone, but attributed it to confusion due to the "fog of war" (there's that phrase again!  (Apparently, I didn't get the memo designating that as the Cliche Du Jour.)

Oh, see, here's what happened, said Rivera, I just confused that battle with this other "friendly fire" incident in Tora Bora (which cost several Afghan lives).  Yeah, that's the ticket.  Even overlooking the sloppy reporting technique that would have to go into making a mistake like that, there's still a little problem.  The second battle--the one Rivera said he was really thinking of--didn't happen until three days after his report (according to the Pentagon).

There are two possibilities here.  The first is that Roger Ailes has started issuing time machines to his FNC correspondents.  In that case, despite my misgivings about its starboard tilt, Fox News Channel would clearly be THE best source for news, bar none.  The second possibility is that Geraldo Rivera is more full of shit than a Port-O-San on the last day of the state fair.  Take your pick.

Naturally, a first-rate news outfit like Fox took immediate steps to reprimand Rivera and thereby salvage its credibility, right?  Well, not exactly.  When the Sun called for a comment, Fox News spokesman Rob Zimmerman said that he had "no information" about whether the network was reviewing the incident.  He also told the Sun that the paper had a "vendetta" against FNC and hung up the phone.   Those of you taking notes will recognize this as the cheapest trick in the book: when backed into a corner, go on the offensive.  Poor little Fox; everybody's out to get them.

OK, we now have inarguable proof that a reporter for a national news outlet is a goddamn liar.  Boy, the right wing must be having a field day with this, huh?  I mean, you know how they're always saying the media is filled with lefties who distort the news and all.  Yeah, you'd think that, but you'd be wrong.  I hear, in fact, that the crowd over at Lucianne Goldberg's website are sticking up for Geraldo!

Now wait just a minute!  What the hell is that all about?  Imagine for a moment that Wolf Blitzer over at CNN had done the same thing as Whore-aldo.  Do you think for a nanosecond that the right wing wouldn't be screaming for his head, calling for boycotts of CNN's advertisers, even Congressional hearings?  Remember the shit storm when NBC News rigged a vehicle to burst into flames on impact?  Over at FNC they still bring that up after all these years. Why no similar outcry after Rivera's fairy tale?

Right wingers should be outraged by Rivera using the death of American servicemen to enhance his own image, but they're not.  They should be screaming for him to be fired, but they're not.  Hmm, could it be that, despite all the protestations and denials, the Republicans know full well that Fox News Channel really is their personal Ministry of Information?  Now that he's at Fox News, Rivera's their boy and can do no wrong, even if it involves taking a figurative dump on the graves of Americans killed in battle .  Keep that in mind the next time you hear some right winger bitching about "liberal media bias".  

Every whore has his price.  Geraldo Rivera got his Christmas present early this year: kneepads with "FNC" monogrammed on them.  Strap 'em on, Gerry.  Here comes Roger Ailes and he's got "bedroom eyes".





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