Home » » Et Tu, Major? Meet Major Benedict Arnold Garrett. What's up with that "polarizing" crack against Fox, Major? You were there, too--if you didn't like it then, why didn't you say speak up?

Et Tu, Major? Meet Major Benedict Arnold Garrett. What's up with that "polarizing" crack against Fox, Major? You were there, too--if you didn't like it then, why didn't you say speak up?

Written By mista sense on Monday, October 25, 2010 | 1:44 PM

The Cable Gamer knew that Major Garrett was up to more than just a desire to get back to writing when he jumped from Fox to Atlantic Media (AM)--she just knew it.  What she didn't know is that Garrett would soon be dumping on his old employer, Fox.   What an ingrate.

As TCG predicted on August 26, Garrett wasn't going off from Fox to think deep thoughts in print; he was leaving Fox News to sign up with a new outlet that would have him doing much the same thing.  As TCG put it, Garrett would be a "once and future Cable Gamer." That is, all that he learned about TV at Fox News Channel would inevitably be put to use by AM as it sought to build out its digital platform--which, of course, these days includes streaming video.   So in the Converging Future, there's not going to be much difference between a "TV" channel and a streaming-video portal.

Sure enough, Garrett was making the TV rounds this morning, touting the new website of National Journal, the flagship of the new site.  But interestingly, and revealing, if one clicks around the website, one sees this--a screen grab:
Note that NJ is actually calling its various pages "channels"!   Kinda tells you where National Journal, and Atlantic Media, are headed.

OK, so far, so good. But now things get interesting.  As recorded by The Krak, Garrett appeared on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" this morning, and said that Fox, his old employer is a cause of polarization, indeed, that Fox delights in polarization:

For a certain amount of marketing points of view, Fox actually wants to keep that polarization. They can say look, we’re different. We’re dramatically different, you can see how we’re different. And if you like that difference you better come over here and you better stay here. That is an embedded part of the marketing that surrounds what happens in the news division at Fox.

The "p"-word--"polarization"--is a fighting word these days.  Every vulnerable politician afraid of being attacked for his or her bad positions tries to say that any such attack would be evidence of "polarization."  So for Garrett to use that word about Fox is echoing the language of the left--and probably of his new employer.  We should ask: If Garrett thought that Fox was polarizing, why did he work there for so long?  Nobody was making him work there--he could have resigned in protest at anytime and denounced Fox.  But he didn't.  He took Fox's money for a decade, and let Fox make him a star.  But come to think of it, Garrett did quit and then denounce Fox; he just waited till 2010, when he got a better offer from AM.  So much for loyalty.   Major, we hardly knew ye. 

Now the Krak--that's Steve Krakauer to the rest of you--did his best to put Garrett's words in context.  As Krak observed:

It’s a surprising statement, but not necessarily as damning as it sounds. It’s no secret that Fox News sees itself as different – an alternative. Only they see it as being “fair and balanced.” Even Garrett’s argument was in the context of NPR being part of the very same polarization.

Yes Krak, Garrett's statement is not necessarily as damning as it sounds.  But it sure sounds damning!  And we can bet that MSNBC will invite Garrett on its air, again and again, to keep pressing him on this point--hoping, of course, that Garrett ups the ante.  And other liberals will do the same.  Most likely, Garrett will, indeed, say more; that's the way these things work, once you start, you can't help yourself.  

So unless Garrett takes back what he said on "Morning Joe," TCG is going to declare him Major Benedict Arnold Garrett, after the famous traitor of the American Revolutionary War.

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