The relentless determination of Fox News to propagate phony stories and contrived outrage can really be rather impressive at times. And on Tuesday morning America's foremost right-wing propaganda source pulled a twofer, slandering President Biden and the COVID vaccine in one dangerously dishonest segment.
On Monday the FDA announced that it was giving a full approval of the Pfizer vaccine as a safe and effective means of preventing infection and transmission of the coronavirus. It took only minutes before Fox News was trashing the FDA and its motives. They asserted that the approval was rushed in the same segment in which they also asked “What took so long.”
On Tuesday morning the “Curvy Couch” potatoes at Fox and Friends called in their medical contributor, Dr. Marty Makary, to comment on matters for which he had no qualifications. He was asked by co-host Brian Kilmeade about what he claimed was suspect timing for the FDA approval. Whereupon Makary accused the Biden administration of using the announcement of the FDA's full approval of the COVID vaccine as a distraction from critical stories about the Afghanistan withdrawal (video below):
“Three days after the viral video [of the Afghan airport] the FDA is going to approve the vaccine after sitting on it for nine months.”
Makary, of course, has no expertise in either media analysis or military strategies. But that didn't stop him from questioning the FDA's action. Nor did the same ignorance on Kilmeade's part prevent him from implying that the FDA's decision – that Makary said was held for nine months – was too rushed, and then issued for political purposes:
“All of a sudden, out of nowhere, the FDA is going to give full approval to the Pfizer vaccine. And then that becomes a leak, and that becomes an announcement. Do you believe the timing is curious? […] They make people doubt, because they look at this timing and they say wait a second, does it really get full FDA approval? Do we really need a booster shot? What are we worried about?
The one constant in all of the COVID coverage by Fox News is to trivialize the pandemic, disparage the vaccine, and frighten their audience away from partaking in it. Tucker Carlson has claimed outright that it doesn't work and that the authorities are hiding that “fact” from you. And Donald Trump told his cult rally that it was just a “money making operation.” Meanwhile, Fox peddles toxic snake oil cures like the horse dewormer, Ivermectin.
Then there is the charge that the FDA was participating in a White House plot to deflect from news about Afghanistan. Makary and Kilmeade had zero evidence of any such scheme or any explanation for why the independent FDA would go along with it. It was purely floated to malign the FDA, the vaccine, and the Biden administration's kept promise to finally end the twenty year long war. Although it might be an improvement over their previous attack on First Lady Jill Biden as being at fault for everything.
In the end, Fox News is going to cause more suffering and grieving as a result of their pro-COVID propaganda. Simultaneously, they will disinform their viewers about the progress of the Afghanistan withdrawal, while inciting more racist responses to the arrival of Afghani refugees who helped American troops for the past couple of decades. Fox News doesn't care about any of these adverse and anti-American consequences, or the harm to human lives. Because the only thing they care about is their Republican power grab, and advancing their ultra-rightist agenda. And
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