Saudi-funded Fox News rejects ad by veterans group arguing against Middle East oil dependence

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"Saudi-funded Fox News rejects ad by veterans group arguing against Middle East oil dependence"

Last week, progressive veterans organization VoteVets.org released an ad arguing that “a clean energy climate plan would cut our dependence on foreign oil in half and cut oil profits for hostile nations.” The ad asserts that “every day, Iran gets $100 million richer selling oil around the world and peddling hate.”  TP has the story.

While CNN and MSNBC have aired the ad, Fox News is refusing to do so. Politico reports Fox apparently found the ad “too confusing.” Watch the “confusing” ad:

There is nothing confusing about the ad. VoteVets’ assertion that hostile nations profit off our oil dependence is based on a Wonk Room analysis that finds, under the a strong carbon cap regime which restrains U.S. appetite for oil, Iran would lose $1.8 trillion worth of oil revenues over the next forty years “” or, over $100 million a day. “If the world moves away from oil dependence, Iran’s regime will no longer be able to rely on petrodollars to stay afloat,” Brad Johnson writes in pretty simple terms.

In a statement issued to ThinkProgress, Richard Smith, a senior adviser to VoteVets who served in Afghanistan, says “the only confusing thing” is why Fox is rejecting the ad:

“There’s nothing confusing about the link between oil and terrorist funding, and even the most dyed-in-the-wool neocons agree on that point. The only confusing thing here is why FOX News would reject an ad that calls on Congress to defund our enemies by finding new sources of energy.

It’s unclear what Fox News’ motivations are. As Media Matters has documented, the network is a reliable source of misinformation on clean energy reform. Interestingly, Saudi oil tycoon Prince Alwaleed bin Talal owns a 7 percent stake in Fox News’ parent company News Corp, making him the largest shareholder outside the family of CEO Rupert Murdoch. But Murdoch has said the he is for a mandatory cap on carbon emissions and believes that Fox News ought to be covering the issue differently.

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12 Responses to Saudi-funded Fox News rejects ad by veterans group arguing against Middle East oil dependence

  1. Jeff Huggins says:

    There’s nothing at all confusing about this ad. Although — just to be clear — I haven’t fact-checked the numbers myself, of course (things are busy today!), the central point is clear and accurate, and there’s nothing confusing about it.

    Indeed, it’s amazing (and psychologically downright bizarre) for Fox, of all organizations, to complain about confusing messages and ads. The vast majority of “denialistic” ads regarding climate change are highly confusing and downright incorrect. And, a large amount of what Fox itself conveys (as “news”?) is highly confusing, only partially “true”, and often completely incorrect.

    Fox complaining about confusion? Give me a break.

    If that’s the way Fox is gonna be, the rest of the media will have to really shine light on that and turn up the heat, so to speak. Because many people only watch Fox. So, if Fox prevents those people from seeing clear and important paid statements from (for example) Veterans and etc., then it’s audiences will simply not see those statements.

    Fox is making a mess of things. Someone should start shining a very, very, very bright spotlight on Fox, NewsCorp, and specifically Rupert Murdoch at this point. Their whole approach is dangerous, and it’s time that more people started paying attention to that problem.

    Sigh,

    Jeff

  2. Kelly Brady says:

    There is not much confusing. I wonder how the VoteVets.org came up with the 1.8 trillion over 40 years. They say we are running out before then and they also have no idea what oil prices wiil do. None. But dishonest people make long term projections and the left seems to take them as facts. We don’t know what the Saudis have for reserves and we sure don’t know what Iran has. I know we have no clue what other countries will do regarding consumption or exploration.

  3. Kelly Brady says:

    There is not much confusing. I wonder how the VoteVets.org came up with the 1.8 trillion over 40 years. They say we are running out before then and they also have no idea what oil prices wiil do. None. But dishonest people make long term projections and the left seems to take them as facts. We don’t know what the Saudis have for reserves and we sure don’t know what Iran has. I know we have no clue what other countries will do regarding consumption or exploration.

  4. Leif says:

    My first thought is that 1.8 trillion dollars is way understated, Kelly Bradly, #3. Just think of the cost of the Iraq war for starters which is costing the American people upwards of a trillion already in and of itself. Granted all that does not go to rouge governments but much has gone to Halliburton which is proving itself to be as distructive to American security as most any terriorest you can name. With friends like that who needs enemies.

  5. Michael Tucker says:

    Showing a wind turbine and talking about how a clean energy plan will “cut our dependence on foreign oil in half” IS CONFUSING. How will that work? I did not know we could get transportation fuel from wind turbines. When we all have electric vehicles wind turbines will work fine until then it is not clear how they plan to cut our oil imports.

    [JR: Plug in hybrids (that are flex fuel), plus pure EVs, are what's coming.]

    Oh wait, I get it, they think a gas “penalty tax” will “restrain our appetite”. When gas was $4+ per gallon the freeways were still full and those who did have to seek other means of transport were more than a little inconvenienced. Sorry, the ONLY way to cut oil imports is to:
    Increase domestic supply – but we don’t have the reserves to make ANY REAL difference.

    Establish a sustainable and affordable biofuel industry that can make up the difference – a fantasy with current technology.

    The ad does not say “we call for a carbon tax now!” because no one would give it another thought. No one wants to entertain adding more taxes. I have seen the ad, since I do watch CNN and MSNBC (wasn’t it also shown on CNBC too?), and find it typically misleading but not offensive. Whenever an organization wants to talk about reducing foreign oil imports or having “clean” transportation fuel, they ALWAYS show a wind turbine. I do not care what Fox News does. They only spread lies and animosity.

    Disclaimer: I do not watch Fox News. The closest I get are Fox clips shown on Olbermann, Maddow, Matthews, The Daily Show, and Colbert.

  6. Leif says:

    The cleanest fuel is the fuel we do not use. It has been estimated that the United States wastes the amount of fuel that the Alaska Pipeline produces. That is a great starting point as we learn to improve on that.

    The longest journey begins with a single step.

  7. Jay Turner says:

    RE: 5: There are lots of ways–other than increasing domestic oil production–to cut our use of foreign oil. And the fact that we don’t have all that much oil left anyway means that hoping that we can supply today’s car fleet with domestic oil is a pipe dream.

    Here are some ways of cutting foreign oil use:
    * Reducing the weight of cars
    * Improving the aerodynamics of cars
    * Diversifying the fuel sources (natural gas and biofuels, for example).
    * Improving the rolling resistance of tires.
    * Improving traffic flow to reduce idling.
    * Reducing the speed limit to 55 mph.
    * Transition industry from petrochemical feedstocks to biochemical feedstocks.
    * Electrifying cars (plug-ins, extended-range EVs, and full battery EVs).

  8. Chris Winter says:

    Michael Tucker wrote: “When gas was $4+ per gallon the freeways were still full and those who did have to seek other means of transport were more than a little inconvenienced.”

    Maybe so, but the numbers are clear. The high prices drove gasoline consumption down, and public transit ridership up.

    http://www.projo.com/business/content/bz_gasoline26_02-26-08_9P95296_v6.2a444b3.html
    Gasoline consumption declines

    http://blogs.consumerreports.org/cars/2008/04/gas-prices.html
    As gas prices increase, consumption decreases

  9. Chris Dudley says:

    I think the correct target has been identified. Oil profits in the Mideast need to be trimmed substantially. The world price of oil needs to drop back below $20/barrel. The other shoe that needs to drop is that that means that new domestic production cannot occur. We cannot produce oil for under $20/barrel anymore. So, to cut the profits of those who can, we have to get out of the oil business ourselves and cut our consumption. The ad speaks of cutting imports by 7 million barrels of oil a day or so. But, we don’t have to do that all at once. If we cut 3 million now and 4 million over the next 7 years, we should keep Saudi Arabia in possession of over 6 million barrels a day of spare capacity. That is a level of spare capacity that breaks OPEC and sends the price of oil below $20/barrel.

  10. ewh says:

    Veterans in favor of that hippie clean energy stuff. I’m so confused!

  11. PSU Grad says:

    I think some of you may be overthinking it a bit (in a forum of generally smart people, smarter than I am at least, that’s not unusual). I think it’s as simple as the images of the explosions. For years we were shielded from the truth of the effects of the Iraq War on our troops. Even the bodies were brought back to Dover AFB in the middle of the night.

    Fox news is simply continuing the coverup of the effects of a war they so ardently pumped up, even to the point of questioning the patriotism of skeptical veterans. Heaven forbid we actually bruise the fragile American psyche by showing the real impacts of war on those actually fighting it.

  12. Dano says:

    Come now. To the Faux demographic this is confusing. Or maybe cognitive dissonance-causing.

    Best,

    D