Fox News just cannot leave this alone. First of all, they loathe American car companies, especially American car companies who were part of the auto industry rescue. Those companies would be General Motors and Chrysler. Never mind that the first piece of the bailout was in December 2008 before Barack Obama took office. It was nevertheless a grievous socialist sin visited upon us by That Guy in the White House.
Fox News', and by extension, Roger Ailes', hate for these two companies is large and consuming. Every Friday, a very large segment of the day is spent trashing the Chevy Volt as much as they possibly can. I don't really know why they chose Friday, but I know they do it. They hate the Volt with a passion and General Motors even more.
Enter Chrysler, with a commercial made by a staunch Republican with a simple message: It's halftime in America, and we've clawed our way back from the brink of collapse. It is not a partisan message. It is a celebration of success and overcoming, something that everyone should celebrate. Unless, of course, your political fortunes might turn on America's decline. There is that.
Karl Rove's delicate sensibilities were offended by the commercial. Fox News has spent large chunks of time over the past three days finding reasons to hate it. But it may possibly be this segment on Wednesday that offers a glimpse into the right-wing paranoia that characterizes today's Republican Party.
It begins with Megyn telling her audience they "did some digging" and discovered the ad agency who made the ad has some "interesting connections to the Obama administration." Hmmmm. What are they? Well, the ad agency is Wieden and Kennedy, an international ad agency with a client list that reads like the Dow Industrial Index. If you're big, and you're corporate, this is an agency you'll likely be using.
But wait, there's more! Stu Varney names Aaron Allen, creative director for Chrysler, as one of the culprits because he designed a poster for the Obama 2008 campaign. At least, that's what his bio says. He names Michael Tabtabai and Jimm Lasser as co-conspirators, because they too, have done some personal artwork or dared to express a personal preference for the President.
All of this leads Stuart Varney to rather indignantly declare that it simply "tells me that my impression of that ad was accurate. It looked to me like it was an endorsement of President Obama's second term."
Yes, of course. This, in spite of Clint Eastwood's rather vehement declaration that it "was meant to be a message just about job growth and the spirit of America." No, no. It's not that at all, Mr. Eastwood. Right? RIGHT?
How does Varney get around that pesky statement by a guy who is a (pardon me, here) straight shooter? Here's how, as explained by a huffy-puffy Varney:
I think it was intentional that I and other viewers would have that impression. I think it was sleight-of-hand to convince Clint Eastwood -- an icon -- iconic American and known conservative -- to put his face and voice on that ad which looked very much like it was supporting a second term for President Obama. I think it's one of the great sleight-of-hand political operations of the last generation.
How else can a group of people who support President Obama, convince Clint Eastwood, a conservative guy, who says he doesn't want to take sides in this?
Maybe, just maybe, it's because it wasn't an elaborate conspiracy theory? As Mr. Eastwood himself opined, "I think all politicians will agree with it. I thought the spirit was OK." And this challenge: “If Obama or any other politician wants to run with the spirit of that ad, I say go for it."
See, Clint Eastwood isn't a fool. He knows that recovery in this country is good for all of us. The only people who stand to lose are those who stand to sabotage that recovery for political gain. Not surprisingly, those same people tend to inhabit, comment on, and view Fox News.
Mr. Varney needs a really nice tinfoil hat to go with his conspiracy theory. It would look nice next to Megyn's blondness, don't you think?