This morning on Fox News' America's Newsroom, Bill Hemmer hosted former FEMA director Michael Brown to comment on FEMA's cash flow problems and Hurricane Irene. Brown criticized FEMA for its spending on certain disaster programs and said that the government will have to start making "hard decisions" on how much to allocate to the agency because the "country is broke." Brown also criticized government officials for "fail[ing] ... to deescalate" Hurricane Irene warnings once it became clear that the hurricane "was losing power and strength."
From the August 30 edition of Fox News' America's Newsroom:
Why Fox thought it would be a good idea to get advice from Michael Brown is a mystery.
Earlier this week, Mediaite.com's Frances Martel asked why Michael Brown -- Bush's former FEMA director -- has been all over the television. Well, as Tommy Christopher points out, Politico appears to have the answer.
Politico's Andy Barr and Patrick Gavin report:
Former FEMA Director Michael Brown has been all over cable television recently bashing the federal response to the oil spill off the Gulf Coast.
But he doesn't see it as an attempt to rehabilitate his image or set the record straight. Nothing that dramatic.
Rather, he just wants the publicity. He wants to sell his new book, he says, and he wants to get some clients for his company.
"There's that phrase, 'Any publicity is good publicity'" Brown told POLITICO. "I kind of buy into that."
It looks like the media is doing a "heckuva job" giving Brownie just the platform he's been looking for.
Yesterday, my colleague Jeremy Schulman said that it's time for Fox News to own up to its role in airing the wild conspiracy theories of former FEMA director Michael Brown. Neil Cavuto addressed the controversy on his show today, but he didn't shed any light on the issue, and he certainly didn't own up to his role in it.
Instead, he threw his viewers a red herring -- making much of a largely insignificant distinction between White House press secretary Robert Gibbs' description of what Brown said and Brown's actual remarks -- while never playing the most egregious of Brown's remarks and never addressing Gibbs' criticism that Cavuto did little to "push back" against Brown's conspiracy theory.
Yesterday, on Fox News' Your World with Neil Cavuto, former FEMA director Michael Brown repeatedly suggested that the Obama administration deliberately chose to let the BP oil spill "get really bad" so it would have an "excuse" to "shut down offshore drilling."
Today, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs called out Fox News for airing Brown's absurd conspiracy theories without pushing back on them.
Now, Fox appears to be devoting the full resources of its news division to covering up what Brown actually said and Cavuto's failure to call Brown out on it. The network has repeatedly insisted that Gibbs was wrong without ever showing viewers what Brown clearly said.
So since Fox won't report the truth, here's what actually happened.