“What I wonder is, do the people at Fox think this kind of thing really serves their audience well? I guess they must, or they wouldn’t be doing it. But to me, it shows that they look on that audience as a bunch of suckers.”
One of the interesting things about The Bubble―the epistemic closure of the conservative information industry that essentially substitutes conspiracy theories and political delusions for reality―is that you can always tell who watches FOX News. To wit, you might hear something in coming days about a poll suggesting a whopping eighty-four percent of Americans oppose the developing nuclear deal with Iran. Even prominent, allegedly respectable conservatives like Bill Kristol are getting in on it.
There are, of course, caveats.
Paul Waldman explains:
Fox News polls are always silly, but this may be worth checking out. So I went to the story, and from there to the actual results, and found the questions in question. Here’s the first:
“Do you favor or oppose the United States taking military action against Iran if that were the only way to keep Iran from getting nuclear weapons?”
Interestingly, they’ve been asking this question for a while, but they used to ask it without the phrase “if that were the only way.” But I suppose that phrasing didn’t produce high enough numbers, so they changed it to this version. And, what do you know, 65 percent of people said yes. Perhaps in the next round, they can add “which would mean you and your children will die a fiery death.”
And here’s the second question:
“Do you think it’s a good idea or a bad idea to allow Iran to get nuclear weapons 10 years from now in return for it agreeing that it won’t obtain nuclear weapons before then?”
What? “…allow Iran to get nuclear weapons 10 years from now”? Seriously? That’s how they describe the proposed deal between the U.S. and Iran. So naturally, 84 percent of people say no, we shouldn’t let them have weapons in ten years. (If you’re looking for a survey that described the deal in reality-based terms, you can see this one, which found that 61 percent of people supported it.)
What I wonder is, do the people at Fox think this kind of thing really serves their audience well? I guess they must, or they wouldn’t be doing it. But to me, it shows that they look on that audience as a bunch of suckers.
It’s pretty straightforward: You’ll know who watches FOX News when you hear about this one.
Waldman, Paul. “The Conservative Information Bubble Lives On, Stoked By Juiced Fox News Polls”. The American Prospect. 5 March 2015.
Benen, Steve. “An opportunity to break free of epistemic closure”. msnbc. 8 November 2012.
Kristol, Bill. “Stunning poll results on Iran”. Twitter. 5 March 2015.