From National Review:
By David French | April 20, 2017
Knifework, not character or integrity, is what we demand from our ideological gladiators. We’re paying the price.
There are those who say that the Left is “taking scalps,” and they have a list of Republican victims to prove their thesis. Roger Ailes is out at Fox News. Bill O’Reilly is out at Fox News. Michael Flynn is out at the White House. Those three names — the head of the most powerful cable news network, the highest-rated cable news personality, and the national-security adviser — represent a stunning wave of resignations and terminations.
But this isn’t scalp-taking, it’s scalp-giving. Time and again prominent conservative personalities have failed to uphold basic standards of morality or even decency. Time and again the conservative public has rallied around them, seeking to protect their own against the wrath of a vengeful Left. Time and again the defense has proved unsustainable as the sheer weight of the facts buries the accused.
Read more here.
I’m old enough to remember how angry conservatives were when President Clinton received fellatio from a completely willing young intern, and how many thought he should be impeached and removed from office for it.1 Why, then, do so many conservatives believe it was wholly wrong for Bill O’Reilly to lose his job for sexual harassment of unwilling co-workers?
Think of all of the situations in which leftists have gotten that conservatives used against them: former President Clinton’s infidelities were still being used in attacks on his wife’s 2016 presidential candidacy, and Anthony Weiner, husband of Mrs Clinton’s top aide, Huma Abedin, and his ridiculous, perverted behavior was also being used against the Clinton campaign.
It was only a couple of weeks ago that conservatives were cheering, and the left were mocking, Vice President Pence for his long-established policy of following the “Billy Graham rule,” refusing to put himself in situations in which he would be alone with any woman other than his wife.2 Why, then, are so many conservatives outraged that Roger Ailes and Mr O’Reilly got busted and lost their jobs for similar behavior?
Well, I’m not outraged, and, quite frankly, I’m not even surprised that such things (probably) occurred. Fox News is great for having brought forth the conservative positions on the news, something no one else on television was doing. But when you watch Fox News, what you are seeing is a bunch of really pretty thirty-somethings dressed in short skirts and f(ornicate) me heels. Now that I have retired (sort of), I have been able to see the very lovely Ainsley Earhardt, one of the three co-hosts on Fox & Friends, in the morning, not only with the obligatory short skirt and heels,3 but wearing sleeveless dresses in the middle of winter; what woman would choose to dress that way, in New York City, if she weren’t under network ‘guidance’ to do so? Mr O’Reilly apparently mentioned to one of the Foxes on Fox that he was glad she was a blonde, but, let’s tell the truth: there are a whole lot more blondes on Fox News than their percentage of the population. Of course, most of them appear to be blonde solely due to help from Clairol!
Fox News’ success has been imitated, of course, as CNN and the Weather Channel appear to have made skirts and heels di rigour for their on-air women as well. I noticed — I’m a fairly observant fellow! — that when Anaridis Rodriguez was heavily pregnant on the Weather Channel, she started wearing flat shoes, but was back in high heels as soon as she returned from maternity leave. It was the change due to physical necessity, and then the return to the obvious dress code when she returned, that brought it to my attention.
Fox News’ viewers very obviously appreciate the way the anchorwomen dress; Fox is number one in viewership, by a wide margin. That CNN would encourage their anchorwomen to dress similarly is hardly a surprise;4 if it worked for Fox, it should work for CNN as well.
It’s long been obvious: television is an appearance-driven medium,5 and the people who make it in television all know that. It shouldn’t be much of a surprise that a medium which places a premium on good looks would be one in which some people think those looks are meant for more than just the camera.
- He was impeached, though not technically for his dalliance with Monica Lewinsky, but for his actions to try to cover it up. ↩
- I noted that, had Mr O’Reilly followed that rule, he’d still have his job today. ↩
- I have noticed Miss Earhardt wearing slacks twice recently; it was so unusual that I took note of it. ↩
- I was unable to find any supporting articles stating that such is a dress code at CNN, but if there isn’t, then it seems that the ladies there all think alike. ↩
- I happen to have a face made for radio, and a voice meant for print. ↩