Bob Beckel

A Bob Beckel Moment

Bob Beckel

“These are words I never thought I would say: I feel kind of sorry for Bob Beckel.”

Jack Mirkinson

And then there is this:

On Thursday afternoon, the network informed Mediaite that Beckel—who had been off the air for a while thanks to some well-publicized struggles with drug addiction—is no longer on the payroll and won’t be returning as a co-host of panel show “The Five.” After the site said that the parting was “amicable,” Fox News went to Politico to emphasize that, no, it was not:

“We tried to work with Bob for months, but we couldn’t hold ‘The Five’ hostage to one man’s personal issues,” Bill Shine, executive vice president of programming, said in a statement. “He took tremendous advantage of our generosity, empathy and goodwill and we simply came to the end of the road with him.”

To call that “harsh” isn’t even an understatement. It’s an under-under-under-under-understatement. Fox News is famous for the pugnaciousness it employs when talking about its competitors, but to turn on your own employee like that when he’s dealing with a drug problem is fairly jaw-dropping. No matter what private misery Bob Beckel may have put his colleagues through, Fox News had the option of letting him go quietly and leaving him to handle his clearly tough fight with addiction. Instead, the network chose to drive the knife through. That’ll definitely help Beckel get better, won’t it?

(Mirkinson)

Honestly, Bob Beckel’s name is not one we might enjoy recalling; as a FOX News host he has been such a horror show one would rather forget he exists. And while schadenfreude whispers from the shadows of conscience that it could not have happened to a … what, really? … is the joke really that it couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy? … the fact is that there is absolutely no excuse for kicking an addict when he is down. Mr. Beckel entered rehab in April, and at the time, according to Andrew Kirell of Mediaite, “As with Fox anchor Gregg Jarrett’s treatment for alcoholism last year, Beckel’s employment status remains unchanged”.

Certes, some might protest that two months is not nearly long enough, but perhaps there really are circumstances that required his termination. Nonetheless, what kind of asshole do you have to be in order to be the president of programming at FOX News? Bill Shine could have left the Mediaite suggestion of an amicable parting alone. Or he could have just said, “You know, actually, it was kind of a mess.” But to go out of his way to mop the floor with Beckel like he did?

Yeah. Ladies and gentlemen, this is your FOX News.

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Mirkinson, Jack. “Fox News just fired one of its hosts in the most vicious & humiliating way imaginable”. Salon. 26 June 2015.

Kirell, Andrew. “Fox’s Bob Beckel Undergoes Addiction Rehab”. Mediaite. 30 April 2015.

The FOX News Way

Bob Beckel

To the one, we shouldn’t laugh. To the other?

Ladies and gentlemen, Bob Beckel:

Earlier this week, a video showing actress Shoshana B. Roberts getting 100 catcalls as she walked through New York City for a day went viral. The point of the video was to show what women go through, and how uncomfortable this form of verbal harassment can be.

But the point was lost on “The Five” hosts.

“She got 100 catcalls, let me add 101,” said cohost Bob Beckel in video posted online by Mediaite and Media Matters, among others. “Damn, baby, you’re a piece of woman.”

(Mazza)

Sigh.

Yeah. About that.

#NotAllMen are smart enough to figure it out.

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The Problem With Bob Beckel

Chyron from FOX News, 14 July 2014

FOX News host Bob Beckel, described as the “token liberal” of the program, The Five is, in that context, a curious icon. Much like former Sen. Zell Miller (D-GA) demonstrated in 2004 just how low one must sink in order to satisfy Republicans, perhaps Beckel is a symbol of just how morally bankrupt one must be to satisfy the bosses at FOX News.

We heard last week of Beckel’s sinophobic rant, including an ethnic slur we haven’t heard much of for decades.

Now Bob wants you to know that he’s sorry if you were offended by what he said, but he’s not sorry for saying it:

During his apology, Beckel was nonspecific about what exactly he was apologizing for.

FOX News logo“I made some comments last week about Chinese people which apparently upset some people for which I apologize,” he said.

But he made it very clear his apology stopped there.

“I do not apologize for the things I said about China, and I won’t go into the litany of it now, because there are too many China apologists in this country,” he said. “But I will continue to warn the American people about how dangerous China is to the U.S. security and to our business community.

“But to those who were offended, I do apologize. I do not apologize to the Chinese government, or for the habits, or for the murders or anything else.”

(LaFond)

We must also remember, however, that Beckel is the sort of “token liberal” whose job is to play the fool. Like the time in 2013, when he wondered, “When’s the last time you heard about rape on a college campus?”

(more…)

One of Those Unsurprising Moments

Bob Beckel

So Alana Horowitz of The Huffington Post wants us to know:

Fox News host Bob Beckel used a racial slur in a rant about China on ‘The Five’ Thursday.

By … the … Goddess! How dare he!

“The Chinese are the single biggest threat to the national security of the U.S.,” he said. “They have been, they will be and they can wait, they’re very patient. Do you know what we just did? As usual, we bring them over here and we teach a bunch of Chinamen — er, Chinese people — how to do computers and then they go back to China and hack into us.”

The other ‘Five’ hosts gaped in disbelief.

“That is going to end up on ‘The Soup,'” Andrea Tantaros said.

Uh-huh. A brief note to Alana Horowitz: It’s FOX News.

To the one, it isn’t as if we have not learned to expect open bigotry from FOX News; to the other, well, yeah, as offenses go, “Chinamen” just ain’t that far up the list. That is to say, well, yeah, It’s FOX fucking News!

What more do we expect?

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Horowitz, Alana. “Bob Beckel Uses Racial Slur On Live Television”. The Huffington Post. 10 July 2014.

A Quote: So Foxed It Foxes FOX

Fox News Channel logoBob Beckel of FOX News’ The Five managed to set a new standard even by his right-wing network’s standards, leaving his co-hosts flummoxed with one of the strangest questions in the history of (ahem!) “journalism”:

“When was the last time you heard about a rape on campus?”

Yes, he really said that.