Fox News has found yet another target worthy of their wrath: the HBO show The Newsroom, or as they like to call it, "the left-wing loonbin."
The Newsroom is based on the premise of an old school news anchor, Will McAvoy, starting a fair and balanced news show in an age of biased media, representing a nostalgia for the famous news anchors of the past a la Walter Cronkite. The show takes place in the recent past, reimagining events like the BP oil spill through the fast-paced, high-stress lens of a TV news show.
But what Fox and Co. are really mad about is one particular speech, given by McAvoy, that concluded the first season. Watch it here:
It's not hard to see why Fox is upset after being called "the American Taliban." On The Five, the hosts railed against the fact that The Newsroom has an incredibly liberal bias and that it's entirely unfair to the Tea Party. They also mocked the dark lighting and the intense tone of the show.
Does the show have a liberal bias? Sure. After all, it's an entertainment TV show written by Aaron Sorkin, not a piece of journalism that purports to be fair and balanced.
But does it unfairly demonize the Tea Party? No, not unfairly. In fact, I would argue that The Newsroom actually represents a side of the Republican Party that is too often ignored.
One thing The Five don't mention is that the show's characters aren't all liberals, speaking about a liberal agenda. In fact, the show's primary character, Will McAvoy, publicly identifies as a Republican. Not a die-hard, mad-as-hell Tea Partier, but a moderate Republican who believes in a prohibitive military and a common-sense government. During his speech, he himself admits that the Tea Party would likely call him a RINO (Republican In Name Only), but they would probably do the same to Ronald Reagan as well.
In recent years, the moderate Republican's voice has been shut out of the political game, replaced by the extremist Tea Party view that bases its policy on vague and idealistic theories and refuses to compromise. They would rather base their decisions on how best to oppose Obama than how best to serve their constituents, and they love to berate anything remotely Democratic without offering a conservative solution. Nowhere is this bias more apparent than their treatment of fellow Republicans who choose bipartisanship. When New Jersey Governor Chris Christie praised Obama for his federal aid relief after Hurricane Sandy, he was immediately demonized by his own party for choosing the welfare of his people over a hard-line ideological stance.
The Newsroom isn't vilifying Republicans, it's chiding the Tea Party for choosing a path that simply cannot lead to real policy or real governance. And that's not a liberal bias, it's an American one.