I hate to comment on anything FOX says, as they're so persistently dishonest (admittedly some parts much more so than others) that I could spend all day, every day, screaming into the void about it and be wasting my time. But... this particular news item struck a cord with me because it seemed illustrate a twist on a familiar maxim.
(I'd made a comment about this on Facebook, but felt that it was worth not being overlooked, so I'm reposting it here.)
What prompted all this was an article on ThinkProgress titled "Fox Host Brian Kilmeade Says ‘All Terrorists Are Muslim’ In Defense Of O’Reilly’s ‘Muslims Killed Us’ Remark".
Commenters on the social media sites were quick to make plays on his wording with such quips as "Brian Kilmeade of Fox News stated this morning that "not all Muslims are terrorists, but all terrorists are Muslim." - proving once and for all that not all idiots are anchors on Fox News, but all anchors on Fox News are idiots."
This brings to mind the familiar maxim of Hanlon's razor... "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity."
However, while this might usually be the case, this is importantly not the case with FOX News. These people know what the facts actually are... and some of them are very well educated people who merely pretend to be complete airheads on air in order to allow their target audience to better identify with them... pretending to not know what common words mean, drawing painfully obvious false parallels in feigned ignorance of the facts etc... it's done by well informed, intelligent people to intentionally manipulate their target audience, and in this case we see a further example of it in that even after having the facts pointed out to Kilmeade, he goes on to reiterate his false statement because it is the "party line" of FOX/Republicans, a group that is largely becoming synonymous these days.
To illustrate this point... let's look at Gretchen Carlson, one of FOX's iconic blonde "pretty lady" hosts.
"Carlson ... graduated from Anoka-Hennepin School District 11's Anoka High School, in 1984, as valedictorian."
"Carlson is also a former pageant winner. She won the title "Miss Minnesota" in 1989 and became the third woman from Minnesota to win the "Miss America" title. For the talent competition, Carlson played Zigeunerweisen, the violin composition of Sarasate."
She not only graduated valedictorian from high school, and went on to win a couple pageants, including Miss America, including classical violin performances etc... but here comes the punch-line:
"Carlson was graduated with Honors from Stanford University, in 1990, with a specialized degree in the field of Sociology (organizational behavior). While enrolled at Stanford University, she studied abroad as part of her Stanford program at Oxford University."
Graduated with honors from Standford with a specialized degree in the "organizational behavior" area of Sociology, including studying abroad at Oxford University in England.
And yet she routinely plays up the image of the "dumb blonde bimbo" on FOX in order to promote misinformation, to take jabs at the opposition through pretending to ignorantly misrepresent things using the same methodology as Push Polling, in that it's not so much about the inherent validity of what's being said, as that can be disproven fairly easily... it's about the constant repetition of the misinformation to create an underlying narrative that the audience subscribes to, assisted by their perceived rapport with the the hosts facilitated by the faux "down to earth common man" charade.
Saying that all terrorists are Muslim fits what Americans would like to believe, and promotes that idea in the face of clear evidence to the contrary because the audience does not want to think about the fact that there are many Christian terrorists today (as listed in the ThinkProgress article, and many others)... as well as other religions, and even non-religious terrorists, of which Timothy McVeigh could be counted as one... people who are merely exceptionally ideologically driven by the ideas of patriotism, liberty, the Constitution, etc... all of which reflect in one way or another on the "Tea Party" red blooded American self image of the core FOX demographic.
So it doesn't really matter that it's not true, and that it's easily proven as not true... it's that the hosts pander to what the audience wants to hear, and repeats the lies often enough to maintain the narrative and keep the audience believing it enough to act on it... to vote for the people FOX wants them to vote for, to buy the books they're selling, the products they're advertising, and so forth.
Which brings us back to the key point. While Hanlon'z Razor posits "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.", in this case, when dealing with FOX, it should be more accurately stated "When dealing with FOX, Never attribute to stupidity that which is more accurately explained by Machiavellianism."
(I could go on further to discuss the relationship of the word "malice" in Hanlon'z Razor to the actions of FOX and their ilk, and the actual effect their manipulation of the general public has on the well being and even the safety and very lives of many human beings... but I think that's enough for today.
Some other related points I'd like to cover in relation to this story include some comments Bill Maher made on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno about the Mosque at Ground Zero, as well as some further information about why Islam is in fact the most dangerous religion today and is far from the "religion of peace" its adherents largely try to make it out to be, and cover specifically why that is, and why they are in fact commanded by their religion to say that and to lie to non-believers and people of other religions about what their religion actually is and says in order to further the agendas of Islam... namely implementing Sharia etc.
But that's for another article...)