Alibi V.13 No.30 • July 22-28, 2004 

Thin Line

Welcome to the most read and most trusted column in Albuquerque. That's right, Thin Line is a no spin zone, where we report, you decide. Some people say Thin Line is the most fair and balanced journalism you will find anywhere in the United States. And that's a good thing, because other news outlets, unlike Thin Line, are so skewed and biased, you and me practically puke at the sight of it.

Some people say Thin Line is their favorite news source, because it's politically neutral and, of course, most accurate. We are neutral, because we are fair and balanced and a no spin zone that happens to be the most read and most trusted news source in town. (Did I mention that?)

Now seriously, what news organization would ever make such pompous claims and be taken seriously? Well, Fox News, of course.

But what if Fox News was intentionally manipulating and misleading the American public while pretending to be informing us? That would be weird, wouldn't it? Especially when the channel is on, like, everywhere—at the bank, the convenient store, your granny's rest home and your favorite bar—all the time.

For example, do you think that weapons of mass destruction have been found in Iraq, or that Saddam Hussein worked closely with the 9-11 terrorists or that U.S. intervention in Iraq had overwhelming international support? According to a study conducted by the University of Maryland's Program on International Policy Attitudes last year, 80 percent of people who primarily got their news from Fox believed at least one of these falsehoods.

The station's successful facade, apparently, has been exposed by a new documentary entitled Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism. According to online reviews, employees of Fox News have provided video tape and internal memos as proof the station is run like a propaganda machine for the White House. True, it's always nice when the insiders squeal, but Fox's slant has been as obvious as dirt in the desert for years. Is this really a shocking discovery?

Nonetheless, Outfoxed continues the left-wing documentary craze of 2004, adding to a list that now includes Fahrenheit 9/11, Uncovered: The Whole Truth About the Iraq War, The Corporation, Control Room, Preventative Warriors, Bush's Brain and The Hunting of the President (the Bill Clinton years). In addition, Filmmaker John Sayles' (Eight Men Out, Lonestar) latest self-financed film due in September, Silver City, is a satire aimed at George W. Bush that Sayles hopes will help defeat Dubya in November.

Makes you wonder what these filmmakers will do for an encore, if the 2004 election turns out like 2000. Maybe someone will make a movie about how Murdoch learned a few tricks of the trade from operating a media outlet in China.