“Home is where the heart is,” but like many of you, I’ve been following international news for years.
I lived in the International House at UC Berkeley during the Iran hostage crisis, and students from many different cultures would gather around the big, boxy television in the “great hall” for the ABC Nightly News, which was the catalyst for Ted Koppel’s “Nightline.” It was a melting pot from America, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. (Unlike George Rebane, we didn’t use the term “ragheads.”)
This week, my wife and I have gathered in front of the television to watch the political crisis unfold in Egypt (on a “newish” flat screen TV with better reception). Our son has joined us on some nights, amazed that the guns being shown are not from a cartoon — but real.
We’ve spent most of the time watching Anderson Cooper on CNN, who is now on the scene, as many correspondents have been during past world crisis.
Just for fun, I flipped to Fox News to see their version.
There was no broadcast from Egypt. Instead, Bill O’Reilly and Glenn Beck were on air, arguing about America’s politics with Europe during World War I and II. Two talking heads who couldn’t agree on the basic facts.
It reminded me that Fox has built its audience on the domestic front, largely flacking for the tea party, Sarah Palin and the like. Political polarization is the order of the day. Rupert Murdoch seems to think America is the Australian Outback.
Fox has a large following. But if it an achilles heel, it is surely international news.