Fox News' Sean Hannity, Bill O'Reilly, and Glenn Beck have all endorsed the new ABC television show V, citing the show's depiction of aliens seeking to conquer Earth who offer to provide universal health care as a critique of “Obama-mania” and “Obamacare.” This is not the first time Fox News personalities have promoted a television show to buttress their right-wing world view; many of them cited Fox's 24 to defend the use of torture by U.S. authorities, among other conservative positions.
Fox News personalities endorse V, claim its “similarities” to Obama are “eerie”
Beck newsletter: V seems to be “based exactly on what Glenn has been saying about progressives” ; "[w]atch and decide for yourself." Glenn Beck's November 4 newsletter highlighted V under the headline “Favorite new show for Glenn?”
Glenn has long talked about the progressives and their goal of transforming the country -- transforming it into something reminiscent of a Karl Marx daydream. There is a new TV show on called 'V' on ABC that debuted last night which seems to be based exactly on what Glenn has been saying about progressives for the last couple of years. Watch and decide for yourself ... but the similarities are eerie.
Hannity: V “seems to be taking aim at Obama-mania,” is “a show that I can actually get behind.” On the November 4 edition of his Fox News program, Hannity said:
HANNITY: And a new ABC drama seems to be taking aim at Obama-mania. That's right, you heard me right. The show is called V, and it focuses on a telegenic leader who arrives from outer space offering a message of hope and compromise and promising, you guessed it, universal health care. Sound familiar? Oh, and the media? They love this new leader. Now, V premiered last night. Let's take a look at a few clips.
You know, I think this is one TV show that I can actually get behind.
O'Reilly: “It's pretty apparent” V takes shots at Obama; “I've got to watch that show.” After airing clips of V, Bill O'Reilly stated on the November 4 edition of The O'Reilly Factor, “I've got to watch that show,” adding that “it's pretty apparent the scriptwriters are taking some shots at President Obama.”
Fox News figures used Fox's 24 to support the use of torture by U.S. authorities, other right-wing positions
Wallace supported waterboarding terrorists: “Listen, I'm with Jack Bauer on this.” On the August 27 broadcast of his radio show, Steve Malzberg told Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace, “So I'm with you. I think the public would say, good! You know, water -- the public says, 'Waterboard them if you have to.' ” Wallace replied: “Waterboard? Listen, I'm with Jack Bauer on this.”
To buttress his support of torture, Beck aired clips from 24. On the April 22 edition of his Fox News show, Beck aired a clip of 24 to support his view that defending the torture of terrorists is a display of “honor.”
Fox & Friends hosts, Beck cited fictional congressional testimony by 24's Jack Bauer in defense of torture. During the January 13 edition of Fox & Friends, Beck and the Fox & Friends hosts invoked 24 as a justification for the use of torture. Referring to the show's season premiere, in which protagonist Jack Bauer, a former member of the fictional “Counter Terrorist Unit,” defends his use of torture during a hearing before Congress, Beck said: "[I]t's going to take somebody who sits in front of Congress who is not afraid of them anymore and does what Jack Bauer did. And that is, 'Yes, I did torture, and I'm proud of it.' And it's time for these things to come out of the closet." Introducing an excerpt from 24, in which Bauer is seen answering questions from a congressional committee about torture, Kilmeade stated: “Let's listen to what happened in the fictional series 24 and see if this helps build your argument.” During the segment, on-screen text read: “What Americans Need to Hear; Beck Applauds Jack Bauer's Honesty.”
Fox News' Gibson suggests nuclear-bomb plot on 24 is “an early warning sign” for America. From the January 16, 2007, edition of Fox News' Big Story with John Gibson:
GIBSON: Well. The big security story tonight, terrorists detonate a mini nuclear bomb in downtown Los Angeles, the plan to kill hundreds of thousands of Americans: fact or fiction? Well, certainly maybe fiction for now. But 24's Jack Bauer has it right. People need to wake up to the possibility of nuclear attack. This isn't only coming from Hollywood. ... Is 24's faux suitcase nuke bomb a real wake-up call for America? Should we take this as an early warning sign that something like this could happen here?
Ingraham on The O'Reilly Factor: “America ... love[s] Jack Bauer” ; ergo, America is OK with torture. On the September 13, 2006, edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor, Fox News contributor Laura Ingraham stated, “The average American out there loves the show 24. OK? They love Jack Bauer. They love 24. In my mind, that's as close to a national referendum that it's OK to use tough tactics against high-level Al Qaeda operatives as we're going to get. OK?”
Dietl, on Your World, justified racial profiling: “You don't watch 24? They're out there.” On the January 17 edition of Fox News' Your World, private investigator Richard “Bo” Dietl used 24 to justify the use of racial profiling when searching for terror suspects. Discussing an incident in which 40 American Muslims were barred from boarding a plane, Dietl told host Neil Cavuto and guest Imam Sayed Hussan al-Qazwini, leader of the Islamic Center of America and one of the 40 Muslim passengers: “The fact of the matter is -- I mean, you don't watch 24 on Fox TV? They're out there. They're out there. There are cells out there. We have to protect ourselves against it, as Americans.”