When Fox News invites left-wing guests onto its shows, it isn’t trying to actually be “fair and balanced” — rather, it’s simply looking for someone to set up as roadkill for pugnacious hosts such as Sean Hannity, Tucker Carlson and former prime time star Bill O’Reilly.
Writing in the New Yorker, longtime Fox News contributor Rich Benjamin reveals the ways that O’Reilly and other Fox hosts try to box left-wing guests into impossible positions — and then explains how to beat them at their own games.
Benjamin notes that one of O’Reilly’s favorite tricks is to lull unsuspecting guests into a feeling of comfort by starting them off with friendly questioning — only to then rudely interrupt them and hammer them mid-answer with aggressive questions.
“O’Reilly hoped that ‘stepping on’ your answer right out of the gate would scramble your train of thought,” he writes. “As O’Reilly’s opponent, you had to box with him aggressively to honor the viewpoint that you were defending yet be careful not to ridicule him too blatantly and risk alienating his viewers.”
Benjamin also notes that he could always tell when he’d landed some real punches against O’Reilly because his fans would send him furious messages on email and social media attacking him.
“When I received no response, I knew my efforts had fallen flat,” he said. “In other instances, just minutes after wrapping up an appearance, my inbox would be flooded with choice feedback from his fans: ‘Commie,’ ‘N*gger,’ ‘Buckwheat,’ ‘F*g.’ These sorts of e-mails, combined with a series of hot, angry tweets, were an accurate measure of an effective appearance.”
Read his entire take on how to win at the Fox News debate game at this link.