Today on The View Barbara Walters held up a copy of the New York Post and noted that the bigger part of the front page was the first picture of Larry Birkhead and DannieLynn, with a headline and picture of the Va Tech murderer on the bottom getting second billing. Here was Rosie O'Donnell's reaction:
Rosie:...Let's just say this, the New York Post is owned by Rupert Murdoch, who owns the Fox News channel. So, if you want to be distracted by what's really happening in Washington, pick up the Post or watch Fox News because they have an agenda to make you not really interested in the real things in this country, but rather Dannie Lynn.
Walters: But Fox News, but Fox News has done all around the clock -- I have listened to that too and they have done stories all around the clock on this --
Rosie: They are slanted and right biased in my opinion
Walters: Well other programs are slanted too, in their own way. We are slanted in another way. But I just think for this ---
Rosie: We are not a news show though, Barbara. This is a news network. You turn on Fox News and you hear right wing propaganda. That is not news. There's no way that that's news.
Behar: They say they're fair and balanced.
Rosie: Well they're lying, if you ask me.
Aisha Tyler (guest host): Well, I just want to say I mean, I actually think this is really emblematic of what's going on in this country right now, there's so much negative news out there that people are obsessed with stuff that means nothing. I mean I turned on CNN during the whole Anna Nicole Smith thing and it was like the Anna Nicole Smith channel. It was like you forgot we were at war.
Walters: And it's not just one network. It was everywhere.
Aisha Tyler: No, it's all.
Behar: It's everywhere.
It went on a little bit longer, morphing into a discussion about Don Imus, but that was all I could take before my head started hurting. On the Fox News is slanted and that is not news topic -- watch Keith Olbermann for about ten minutes. (Really, watch him, if just five of you do it will increase his ratings dramatically. Okay, I exaggerated there -- a bit.) What Keith Olbermann does on MSNBC is not news, but it is dressed up like news. It is moonbattery at it's battiest. Watch ABC's global warming "reporting." If that is not propaganda, then nothing is. For another thousand or so examples of propaganda on networks other than Fox News, just read a few days worth of Newsbusters.
As for Rosie's claim that The View is not a news show -- she's right, it isn't classified as a news show, but they do disseminate news to a rather large audience, whether they want to acknowledge it or not. I wrote a bit on that recently. I believe that in many ways the news that reaches viewers when they are not tuning into a news show has a greater impact than news they get when they are conscious that news is being delivered.