Accuracy in Media

Fox News took another turn for the worst when it started airing a new show hosted by Erich “Mancow” Muller, a loud-mouth shock jock whose radio program was the subject of repeated indecency complaints to the Federal Communications Commission. Muller’s employer admitted the essence of the charges, paid a substantial fine of $300,000, and let Muller go in 2005. Fox News has tried to make him a star.

The complaints were filed by David E. Smith, now head of the Illinois Family Institute, who objected to Muller’s airing of sexually graphic material. Muller, who poses as a conservative on the Fox News Channel, trumpets his own right to “free speech” but  sued Smith for filing indecency complaints against him. The Muller suit was completely frivolous, of course, and was eventually dropped.

Before getting his own show on Fox News, Muller made regular appearances on the Fox & Friends show.

Despite Muller’s sleazy background, the conservative-oriented website ran a positive story about his new Fox show and his career. The story made no mention of his history of filthy routines.

The Family Research Council had honored Smith for his work against Muller, and Peter LaBarbera, who preceded Smith as head of the Illinois Family Institute, said that Smith was “living proof of the idea that one person can make a difference.”

Muller makes a difference by contributing to cultural pollution. For that, he gets a regular show on Fox News, the “conservative” channel.

Years ago I was duped into appearing on Muller’s radio show to talk about the United Nations. I didn’t know who he was at the time. When the interview quickly degenerated into insults and interruptions, I hung up the phone. Muller gave out my home phone number over the air, generating dozens of harassing calls to me and my wife, who was pregnant at the time. I complained to Muller’s employer and received a financial settlement without having to file suit. 

This is the kind of person Fox News has hired. It’s amazing to see so many conservatives duped into thinking he’s one of them.

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