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Tuesday, April 15, 2003


One More Reason (Out of Millions) Not To Trust Fox News
One of my fellow bloggers (I don’t recall who it was) pointed out that even to debate over whether Fox News is biased to the right is to give credibility to the absurd position that it isn’t—it’s kind of like debating a flat-earther or a Holocaust revisionist. Let’s face it; Fox News is a right-wing political operation masquerading as a news channel.

Steve Milloy, the self-proclaimed “Junkman,” is the type of person who Fox News uses as an expert on issues (Milloy writes columns for Fox News’ web site). Milloy also craftily grabbed the domain name www.junkscience.com to promote his views. Ostensibly, Milloy is on a crusade against junk science—which he terms “faulty scientific data and analysis used to used to further a special agenda.” Certainly, this is a noble calling. Unfortunately, exposing junk science isn’t part of Milloy’s goals—unless it serves his true agenda (that you won’t find on his web site).

Probably one of the dominant interests that has promoted junk science is the tobacco industry (remember the tobacco executives who perjured themselves before Congress regarding the addictive nature of tobacco?). PR Watch has the goods on Milloy; PR Watch disclosed how Milloy “got his start as a behind-the-scenes lobbyist for the tobacco industry, which has arguably done more to corrupt science than any other industry in history.”

PR Watch also uncovered Milloy’s propaganda regarding asbestos and the World Trade Center. Following the collapse of the twin towers, it was a talk radio talking point that had the framework of the upper floors been insulated with asbestos, there would have been a delay in the collapse of the towers--possibly saving thousands of lives. The authors of a PR Watch piece debunk the Junkman’s junk science on this issue:

The only individuals quoted to support this theory, however, were scientists who had previously worked as paid expert witnesses for the asbestos industry during product liability lawsuits filed by cancer victims. None of these experts had actually done research comparing asbestos to other heat-resistant insulating materials in the event of a plane crash like the one that destroyed the World Trade Towers, and in fact there is no scientific evidence whatsoever to support the claim that asbestos would have delayed the collapse of the towers by even five seconds, let alone four hours.

Milloy portrays himself as a watchdog for the public interest. Instead, he is a lapdog for corporate interests that harm consumers. The American people are ill-served by him. It is not surprising that Fox News would associate itself with this hack.


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