Die Große Lüge
I realize this probably comes under the heading of “Tell Me What I Don’t Already Know.” But driving to work the other day I heard a radio commercial for Fox News, which touted itself as the “only fair and balanced” news broadcast on the air. I laughed so hard I almost lost control of my vehicle. (I never watch Fox News if I can help it, except once at the dentist while under anesthesia or when waiting to have my tires rotated. So I had never heard their motto.)
In his 1925 autobiography Mein Kampf, Adolph Hitler coined the expression die Große Lüge, or “the big lie,” a propaganda technique that makes use of a lie so “colossal” that no one could ever believe that someone “could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously.” The idea quite naturally came to my mind when I heard Fox’s advertisement.
Last week a Fox news associate producer, Heidi Noonan, was identified on camera whipping up a crowd at the “massive” Sept. 12 anti-Obama rally in Washington, an event highly promoted by Fox news anchor Glenn Beck. A spokesperson for the news channel admitted the producer had erred and had been “disciplined.”
Now I would love to have been a fly on the wall when that disciplinary action was taken (I’m sure there is no shortage of flies on the walls at Fox). I wonder, was she taken straight out to lunch or perhaps sent on a two-week sabbatical to Cancun? –you know, just to give her time to think about what she had done.
Next time, Heidi, work behind the camera. Remember, you’re fair and balanced.