Monday, November 07, 2005

FOX on the Horns of a Dilemma

***FOX News Internal Memo***

From: Roger Ailes, President
To: Brit Hume, Managing Editor

Brit, we've got a serious problem here unlike any that's ever confronted the FOX News family before. Frankly, it presents an ideological paradox that threatens to rip the brain trust apart at the seams. Hannity has stopped taking solid food and poor O'Reilly just stares out of his window for hours at a time muttering "A Current Affair" over and over again (although I could swear I heard him say "stop the War on Christmas" once during Fox and Friends).

I am speaking, of course, about the Muslim riots in Paris. On the one hand we've got crazy, violent Muslims doing that crazy violent Muslim thing they do. On the other hand we've got the dirty, cowardly French, who once had the gall (get it? gall! heh heh) to criticize American foreign policy.

Up here in the corporate offices, we just can't figure out how to cover this one. Should we have sympathy for the Muslims or the French? (God, I've had nightmares where I've had to answer that question!) It doesn't help any that the Muslims have deviated from the script, here. What I wouldn't give for a homicide bombing or two. That would clarify things.

I suggested to Rupert that we just send someone over there to get both sides of the story and let the viewers decide, but he's not really comfortable with the fair and balanced angle. "Don't change horses in midstream," is what he told me.

So, we need you guys to work up some talking points that don't threaten O'Reilly's boycott but also don't give aid and comfort to the enemy (either one, in this case). Any chance we could work Harry Reid or Chuck Schumer into this? See what you can work up and we'll talk after you go downstairs to let Colmes out of his cage for exercise.

Yours in trepidation,

Roger

P.S. Don't send Shepard Smith to cover this story, whatever you do. That whole Katrina debacle proves that he's a little too sympathetic to the unwashed poor. Sure, everyone loves an underdog story, but let's maintain our focus on kids who can't sing "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" in school because of the ACLU. People seem to eat that kind of crap up. Maybe Shepard could do with a few more weeks at the FOX News "Corporate Retreat."
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