Friday, October 17, 2003

The Fox Misinformation Channel. I'm late to this, but it's too amusing -- and relevant -- to let it pass by.

According to a University of Maryland study of seven nationwide polls, those who rely on the Fox News Channel as their primary source of information are the most likely to believe at least one important misperception about the war in Iraq.

The misperceptions:

  • That weapons of mass destruction have been found in Iraq. (Sorry, David Kay fans -- precursors, abandoned trailers, twigs, and seeds don't count.)
  • That evidence has been found of a link between Saddam Hussein's regime and Al Qaeda. (Even George W. Bush had to correct Dick Cheney on this one.)
  • That world opinion favored the US going to war with Iraq. (It's hard to believe that anyone believes that.)

According to the study, 80 percent of Fox viewers believed one or more of those untruths; between 55 percent and 71 percent of those who relied on CNN or one of the Big Three broadcast networks were similarly misinformed; and only 47 percent who rely mainly on print, and 23 percent who rely on NPR and/or PBS, shared those misperceptions.

Here's a story on the study in the Washington Post by Harold Meyerson. (Guess he's not at the American Prospect anymore.) You can read the study itself here.

Turning on Romney. Globe columnists Scot Lehigh, who is certainly not hostile to Governor Mitt Romney, and Brian McGrory, who could be considered a fan, have both had it up to here with Romney's transparent political posturing.

Specifically, they're disgusted with Romney's absurd bid to name the depressed Central Artery the Liberty Tunnel rather than honor the late Tip O'Neill.

Turning on Grady. There is nothing I can add to what has already been said about last night's horror show.

The early nomination for the smart-commentary award goes to Dale Arnold and Bob Neumeier on WEEI Radio (AM 850) this morning. (Caveat: others may have said this before them, but the fill-ins on Dennis & Callahan seemed mainly interested in constructing a gallows for hapless manager Grady Little.)

Arnold and Neumeier argued that from a pure management point of view, Little probably deserves to be rehired because of what he's accomplished during his first two seasons, and because his players not only like him, they play hard for him.

But -- and this is the but on which everything turns -- they added that, logic aside, Little can't be rehired. The fans will never stand for it. They're right. After a decent interval (say, until right after the World Series), Little will be gone.

And let me add my voice to those of millions of other Red Sox fans: Little's decision not to start the eighth with Mike Timlin was the single most bone-headed managerial move I have seen in 35 years of watching baseball games. My heart sank when I saw Pedro Martínez stroll back to the mound after his outstanding night's work was apparently over.

Of course, that blunder was only compounded by Little's refusal to get off his ass and rescue Martínez after he gave up a hit, then two, then three.

There was no Curse last night. Just sheer, unmitigated stupidity.

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