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Footnotes To Life

Because sometimes we need them to help us understand…

Fox News Unemployment Rate Graph

D'oh, forgot to move that last point.

I was in the process of writing a very nasty post about Fox News, and how they are clearly trying to manipulate the American public. However, after some research, it has become clear they are simply the butt of an excellent practical joke perpetrated by someone in their graphics department. In 2009, Fox News decided on a zero tolerance policy for errors in on air reporting. Clearly, such strong words haven’t worked.

My interest was aroused when I saw this recent error involving the unemployment rate. Here’s a link to it on the blog of Washington Post’s writer Erik Wemple. As you can see in the chart above, the most recent months  numbers appear at the same level as the previous month’s numbers, despite a 0.4% drop. In fact, the data point for the 8.6% rate in November is clearly above the point for the 8.8% rate in March. That looked to me like deception in action, so I had some scathing comments for Fox News, insulting their journalistic abilities, devious manipulation techniques and ancestry, until I found a second error.

Fox News Mislabled States

That doesn't look like Nevada to me...

That doesn't look like New Hampshire...

The second gem came courtesy of Media Matters America. The December 13th edition of Fox’s Special Report with Bret Baier managed to mislabel some of the states. Isn’t that something we were all supposed to learn in elementary school? Clearly, Fox’s editors never made it to middle school and should have a fifth grader check their work for errors.

Although I was almost laughing hard enough to fall off my chair, I continued my search. As if by magic, I found another graphic error (Pun intended) courtesy of Erik Wemple again. This time, Mitt Romney seems to have morphed into President Obama. I was sent into spasms of laughter. The only conclusion I could draw was that some unknown individual, deep in Fox’s graphics department has become unhappy with the company (possibly with his vision plan? We can only speculate), and decided to cause chaos in Fox newsrooms around the country.

Fox News Mitt Romney becomes Obama

Mr. Romney seems to have pulled something we'll call the "reverse Michael Jackson"

Thanks buddy, this bud’s for you.

Fox did issue a retraction for that last blunder, and display the proper graphic, about an hour after the first one aired. Unfortunately, no one was around to see it because they’d all left to go to TJ Maxx and replace their ruined pants.

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