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Jobs identified Fox News as 'incredibly destructive force'

updated 02:55 pm EDT, Wed October 26, 2011

More info emerges from Jobs biography

Former Apple CEO Steve Jobs was extremely critical of Fox News, and Rupert Murdoch, the CEO of the network's parent company News Corp., Reuters notes. The information comes from the Jobs biography by Walter Isaacson, which shipped on Monday. In June 2010 Jobs agreed to speak at News Corp.'s annual management retreat, breaking a personal policy against such speaking engagements. Why he agreed is unclear, although Apple and News Corp. would later launch The Daily for the iPad.

Murdoch explains that at the retreat, Jobs was "very blunt and critical of what newspapers were doing in technology." At a later dinner, the biography claims that Jobs told Murdoch that he was "blowing it" with Fox News. "The axis today is not liberal and conservative, the axis is constructive-destructive, and you've cast your lot with the destructive people," Jobs is quoted as saying. "Fox has become an incredibly destructive force in our society. You can be better, and this is going to be your legacy if you're not careful."

Jobs even suggested to Isaacson that Murdoch himself was not happy with Fox News' direction. The network has been criticized for adopting an openly conservative bias, and sometimes outright manipulating facts. "Rupert's a builder, not a tearer-downer," Jobs told Isaacson. "I've had some meetings with James [Rupert's son], and I think he agrees with me. I can just tell."

Murdoch dismissed Jobs' position in his own interview for the biography. "He's got sort of a left-wing view on this," he said. The book also mentions that Jobs had planned to ask comedy news outlet The Daily Show to assemble clips of Fox News for Murdoch to watch, but the News Corp. CEO never received anything, at least while Jobs was alive. The Daily Show is well-known for pointing out discrepancies in Fox News coverage.

by MacNN Staff



  1. facebook_Mark

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Oct 2011


    Not enough hours in the day

    "The Daily Show is well-known for pointing out discrepancies in Fox News coverage."

    I had no idea TDS had become a 24-hour show, because that's the only way they'd get through it all.

  1. WiseWeasel

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Too Narrow

    While it's certainly true that Fox News is a subversive force, I would apply the same criticism to all major US corporate TV news networks. CNN and MSNBC, along with the major network news segments, might not be quite as overt in the pursuit of a political agenda as Fox, but they are still terrible, terrible sources of information in most cases, relying heavily on a wide variety of worthless talking head "analysts" with their own obvious agendas, rather than reporting facts and letting the audience decide what to make of them. I guess it's an easy way to fill airtime, but it's a terrible way to inform yourself of what's actually happening in the world.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. Inkling

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Yeah, right

    Yeah, if you define liberal as progressive and unfailingly right then anyone who criticizes liberalism is being destructive. That's why Roger Baldwin (founder of the ACLU) could go the the Soviet Union in the late 1920s, notice that it had absolutely no civil liberties, and yet write a book called Liberty Under the Soviets. If you doubt me, check his book out.

    Why could Baldwin say that? Because the Soviet Union made Jobs' same distinction between constructive speech and destructive speech. The former, meaning praise of Stalin and his programs, was allowed. The latter, mean Fox News' criticism of the Obama administration and its agenda, was not.

    Jobs attitude isn't surprising. Creative genius's are often political idiots. Picasso became a communist in 1947, at the very time when communism was crushing out the last vestiges of freedom only a few hundred miles away in Eastern Europe.

    To any with eyes to see, it's not hard to spot the most destructive force in our society. Legalized abortion, particularly as it targets poor minorities, is a near-perfect illustration of those whose agenda is the most destructive.

    That said, I'd agree with WiseWeasel, that all the cable news channels aim to polarize. All prefer pundits with agendas to hosting those who're genuinely knowledgable. Experts, both liberal and conservative, know our public schools are a disaster, in large part due to our teachers unions. But a cable news channel would rather have a spokesman for the NEA screaming at a militant NEA opponents. That draws more eyeballs for their advertising. If you want good news coverage and helpful debates, turn to CSPAN.

  1. facebook_Robert

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Oct 2011


    Fox, ABC, CBS, NBC = garbage

    I agree that it's not liberal vs. conservative. Frankly what network didn't tow the government line when, for example, we had a massacre of the Branch Davidians in Waco? Or, when our ally Georgia broke its peace accord and invaded South Ossetia.

    In politics its easy to say someone is just voicing an opinion based on their politics - its so, so easy.

    But common their were tons of Russian immigrants who thought american media stood for truth and honesty, but they knew for 100% fact that the american media misreported the Georgia invasion - they had relatives in the area - they had first hand reports of what happened.

    And so when you absolutely know what happened, and the media reports this concocted story straight from the government PR machine - it opens your eyes. You realize, what the heck, they've been doing this all along.

    Hillary Clinton, when she said 'kill Qadaffi' - heck there is no dispute Qadaffi was a dictator that needed to be captured and put on trial and yes, the sentence may have been death. But can we have at least a debate as to whether having trials serves any purpose for the rule of law?

    Apparantly its no liberal vs. conservative debate - Obama's foreign policy is hard to distinguish from George Bushes.

  1. chas_m



    Dang it, Steve's right AGAIN!

    "The axis today is not liberal and conservative, the axis is constructive-destructive, and you've cast your lot with the destructive people."


  1. climacs

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Fox != CNN/CBS/ABC/NBC

    sorry, while all are terrible places to get your (primary) information about what's going on in the world, Fox stands head-and-shoulders above the rest. Fox News Channel is a very conscious attempt at propaganda and disinformation. The rest of the networks are simply captive of the Establishment and generally spout the inside-the-Beltway Common Wisdom. They can be nudged in the right direction, eventually. Fox News Channel is proudly and deliberately playing the rubes and useful idiots.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. ferdchet

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Big surprise.

    First, this is a "dog bites man" story designed to put red meat out in front of the dogs. Looks like it worked. Was anyone not aware that Steve was a huge liberal?

    Next, guess you guys have never watched MSNBC or CNN. Talk about slanted. It's funny how you guys are all for freedom of the press unless it is Fox. I hate TV news, and 24 hr news in particular, but you only like these other channels because they cater to your worldview. MSNBC has been caught on multiple occasions reading "stories" lifted word for word from WH press releases. So give it up.

    Robert has it right.

  1. climacs

    Joined: Dec 1969



    It's funny how you guys are all for freedom of the press unless it is Fox.

    show me one person here on this comment thread who stated that they think the government should censor or ban Fox News, and I'll send you $1000 via PayPal.

    apparently you believe in the Sarah Palin/Teabagger Constitution, where the First Amendment reads, "I have the right to say anything I want, and anyone who criticizes stupid S*** that I say is oppressing me and taking away my freedom of speech!!!!1111!!!ELEVENTY!!!1111!!!!"

  1. ljmac

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Can you actually cite any evidence that legalised abortion is a destructive force in society? I thought not.

    On the other hand, there's plenty of evidence that overpopulation is perhaps the greatest destructive force ever, and people who are unwilling or unable to bring up children being forced to is also clearly destructive.

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