Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Tuesday, 8th July 2008

Pop great Madonna denies extramarital relationship with baseball luminary

By Matthew B. Zeidman

MIAMI (Hollywood Today)
7/7/08 –
It’s usually New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter’s high-profile relationships that make tabloid ink,
but these days it’s teammate Alex “A-Rod” Rodriguez’s alleged involvement with iconic entertainer Madonna that has the wires buzzing.
According to New York’s Daily News, his purported involvement with the married pop star was the final drop in the bucket for his wife,
Cynthia, who, along with Rodriguez, was expected to file for divorce today.

“Cynthia is tremendously traumatized and devastated,” attorney Earle Lilly, who is representing Rodriguez’s spouse, told TMZ.com.
Lilly also asserted to the celebrity Web site that “Madonna was the last straw” in a string of multiple infidelities.

According to the Daily News, Rodriguez, 32, will claim his wife’s unwillingness to mend their marriage was a contributing factor to the divorce proceedings, which will be held in Miami.
The couple has two young children, 3-year-old Natasha Alexander and 2.5-month-old Ella Alexander.

For her part, Madonna has denied having amorous relations with the New York baseball luminary,
telling People magazine she met Rodriguez through their mutual manager, Guy Oseary, and that the connection between the pair was categorically platonic.
In turn, rocker Lenny Kravitz squashed rumors he and Cynthia Rodriguez were involved,
telling E! her visit to his home in France was definitely not a romantic rendezvous and he was simply being a good friend during hard times.

Photo: Alex and wife Cynthia

The ancient scripts that predate - and might rewrite - the Bible
Last updated at 12:47 AM on 07th July 2008

A fresh interpretation of a stone tablet dated to the decades before Jesus's birth could undermine some fundamentals of the Christian faith, experts claim.

The tablet, which is similar in style to the Dead Sea Scrolls,
is said to predict that a messiah would rise from the dead within three days.

The partially-deciphered Ancient Hebrew text had seemed to contain a
vision of the apocalypse as told by the Angel Gabriel.

A fragment of the Dead Sea Scrolls which set the word talking when they were discovered 60 years ago.
The new text seems to imply the life and death of Jesus was predicted before his birth

But a leading scholar says it confirms his theory that some Jewish sects
before Christ believed a messiah would save them - but not before he was killed and brought back to life after three days.

Israel Knohl, Professor of Biblical Studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, says one line of the text tells the 'prince of princes' slain by the evil government,
'in three days you shall live'.

He suggests the story refers to the death of a Jewish prince called Simon who led a revolt against King Herod.

Daniel Boyarin, of the University of California at Berkeley, said that there was growing evidence suggesting that Jesus could be best understood through a close reading of the Jewish history of his day.

'Some Christians will find it shocking - a challenge to the uniqueness of their theology, while others will be comforted by the idea of it being a traditional part of Judaism,' he said.

But Christian scholars dispute any contention that the tablet, which is in a private collection, could dilute the significance of Jesus's resurrection.

Ben Witherington, of Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky, said:
'This stone certainly does not demonstrate that the Gospel passion stories are created on the basis of this stone text.'

Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) will leave the hall of the Democratic National Convention in Denver and deliver a rock-star-style acceptance speech at nearby Invesco Field at Mile High, quadrupling his live audience, the party announced Monday.
The speech, in the stadium that is home of the Denver Broncos, will be on the fourth and final night of the convention, Aug. 28.

Monday, July 7th, 2008

Grammy nominee Timothy Wright in critical condition, wife and grandson die

By Brian Frederick

DANVILLE, PA (Hollywood Today)

7/6/08 - -
“He shall live,” Rev. Frank Williams told the congregants at the Grace Tabernacle Christian Center.

Grammy nominee Timothy Wright, 61, his wife Betty Wright, 58, and their grandson D. J. Wright, 14,
were driving eastbound on interstate 80 Friday night when John Pick, 44,
of Lewisburg, PA drove westbound on the eastbound interstate (the wrong way) opposite Wright’s vehicle,
slamming head-on at approximately 10:30 p.m. while passing through Greene Township, Clinton County.

Despite the tragedy, Rev. Williams held Sunday services for hundred of worshipers.
“He has impacted too many people.
He has paid some of our rents when he couldn’t even pay his own.” Rev. Williams said.

Mourners solemnly gathered for services Sunday morning but the church’s founding pastor and co-pastor wife Betty, were noticeably missing.
Rev. Wright lay in Geisinger Medical Center’s intensive care unit recovering more than 150 miles away in Danville, Pennsylvania.
Betty died at the scene and their grandson died in the hospital on Saturday.

“Their blood is in these walls.
Betty was a crucial force in getting this church to the place it is today,” said one parishioner.

“The mood is very somber, “said Royston Antoine.

Services were filled with remembrances for Betty and the hope for Rev. Wright’s speedy recovery.
Many worshipers were stunned to learn of the tragedy when they arrived at church, while others filled the pews because of the news.
Many worshipers expressed their grief to the press.

Rev. Wright and his family were driving from a church conference in Detroit, MI on their way home when Pick collided with Rev. Wright’s vehicle.
Pick died at the scene.

Many devoted fans knew Rev. Wright as “The Godfather of Gospel.”
He has recorded more than a dozen gospel albums.
In 1994, he was nominated for a Grammy in the category, best traditional soul gospel, ‘Come Thou Almighty King.’
Rev. Wright’s latest album ‘Jesus, Jesus, Jesus’ was released last year.
Rev. Wright began singing at the age of twelve and started his own choir in 1976.
He was a protégé of gospel singer, Ernestine B. Washington.

Before leaving to see Rev. Wright after church services, Bishop James Gaylord who was in attendance said of Rev. Wright, ‘He was a tremendous man.”

Rev. Wright’s MySpace page listed a multicity nationwide gospel tour to begin on Wednesday in Jasper, Texas. Young D.J. was expected to follow in his grandfather’s footsteps

***Fresh from the success of the 4th Annual Plymouth Jazz Festival Tobago, with headliners Whitney Houston, Rod Stewart and Shakira, Barrett LaRoda, CEO of the LaRoda Group,
has announced that he will once again executive produce and produce alongside Nduka Obaigbena, CEO of THISDAY Media Group, the 3rd Annual THISDAY Music Festival to be held in Abuja and Lagos, Nigeria.
***Robert De Niro weighed in Saturday on the debate over a possible strike by actors in Hollywood, coming down firmly against any work stoppage.

***On Sunday, NBC Universal and private equity titans Bain Capital and Blackstone Group became the proud owners of the Weather Channel, scooping it up from Landmark Communications in what is believed to be a $3.5 billion deal.
***Since the start of the year NBC's "Today" is up about 3 percent, leading ABC's "Good Morning America," which is down 6 percent, by about 1.2 million viewers a week according to media expert and author Michael Levine.

Music publicist Marilyn Laverty along with approximately 299,000 other "influencers".
Media Talk

Ads Are a Reminder: It’s Not Just Soap; It’s a Soapbox

Published: July 7, 2008

Dove is trying to rekindle customer interest in its four-year-old “Campaign for Real Beauty,”
which shows images, including curvy women in white underwear,

that have sometimes eclipsed the charitable cause that underpins it.

Ruby Washington/The New York Times

A Dove billboard with the "real" looking women models.

And that, some critics say, is the problem: Unilever, which manufactures the Dove brand of soaps,

shampoos and body lotions, uses the campaign to raise money for a fund that promotes healthy body images to young girls,

but the effort is faltering because consumers do not connect its products to the cause.

So Dove is changing course.
Last week, it introduced a television spot that directly links the purchase of Dove products to financial support for the Dove Self-Esteem Fund.
The 30-second commercial, “Under Pressure,” shows a girl bombarded with unrealistic images of skinny models and closes with the line:
“And you support our efforts every time you buy Dove.”
(To clear up any lingering confusion, the ad, created by Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide, also shows a Dove moisturizing soap bar.)

The ad may not be enough to silence critics.
Dove says that it does not designate a dollar amount or percentage of product sales for its Real Beauty campaign,
but it said it had spent more than $10 million on the Self-Esteem Fund, which also takes donations from the public.
By comparison, the Dove brand brought in sales of more than $2.5 billion last year, outselling competitors like Ivory from Procter & Gamble.

Kathrine E. O’Brien, United States marketing director for Dove, said that the Self-Esteem Fund will spend $1.5 million to $2 million this year.
The goal is to reach five million girls by 2010, and so far the number stands at two million, she said.
Most of the outreach is done through a collaboration with the Girl Scouts, which offers a program to help girls counter idealized beauty images.

The campaign has “spent a lot of time debunking stereotypes, and now it’s time to let people know what we’ve been doing to build self-esteem,” Ms. O’Brien said.

While Dove’s ads have been widely praised for drawing attention to unrealistic beauty images, they also have been widely mocked, which is in part a testament to their success.
Aside from the standard YouTube parodies, there was a campaign by Greenpeace that superimposed four orangutans on a Dove tableau —
not to protest negative images of women, but to argue that Unilever was destroying orangutan habitats in its quest for palm oil.

Dove says it is taking a cue from its critics.
“The earlier ads were all about exposing the problem, but starting last year we started to hear from women that ‘we get it,
but tell us more about what you actually are doing,’ ” said Janet D. Kestin, co-chief creative officer at Ogilvy Toronto, who helped create the spot.

“The soap bar is the emblem of the brand, so people now understand:
‘If I buy that, then I’m doing something,’ ” Ms. Kestin said.

***Procter & Gamble, the consumer goods giant, is part of a wave of companies getting into the music business to promote their own products.

***It's unclear whether his Mossad retirement benefit card will be confiscated, but former spy and current political analyst Yossi Alpher is certainly feeling sheepish after being fooled by actor
Sacha Baron Cohen, aka Borat.

Cohen was in Jerusalem two weeks ago filming scenes for his next movie, Bruno,
based on a character the British comedian played in his Da Ali G Show.
In that show, Cohen played Bruno as a flamboyant Austrian fashion and
celebrity journalist, regularly interviewing unwitting members of the public who weren't aware he wasn't a real person.
***Xaviera Hollander is 65, but the former call girl known as "The Happy Hooker" still has an eye for hunky young men.
After taking in "The Stitching," Anthony Neilson's sexually charged play at the Wild Project in the East Village, Hollander panted, "It's delightfully pervy.
Meital Dohan, from 'Weeds,' was ferocious - though I would have enjoyed more nakedness, especially from Gian-Murray Gianino."
Meanwhile, "Portrait of a Sexual Revolutionary," a new documentary about Hollander's colorful life, won big at the Philadelphia Independent Film Festival.

***Snoop Dogg has gone Bollywood.
The hip-hop legend has teamed up with Indian superstar Akshay Kumar to make a music video for the theme song of a new movie, "Singh Is Kinng."
Kumar, who has more than 80 Indian film credits to his name, is best known for his Khiladi series, in which he plays an Indian version of James Bond.
He'll play a dangerous underworld gangster in the new picture
The duo will meet next month in Chicago to produce the video.
***A publicist for Keith Urban says Nicole Kidman has given birth to a baby girl in Nashville.

***2% of properties in foreclosure last year in Florida, the state with the highest rate of mortgage fraud.
***21.8 million is the estimated number of nonnaturalized immigrants, both legal and illegal, currently living in the U.S.
***1,269 the number of successful suicide jumps off San Francisco's Golden State Bridge since 1937.
Although opponents worry that a barrier would mar the bridge's appearance, the city is considering various safety options, including a higher fence or netting to catch jumpers.
***29 million the number of Americans buying music legally online, a 21% increase from 2006.
***28 million the number of Americans projected to receive food stamps in 2008, the most since the 1960s.

Mr. Peter Dekom of Entertainment Financial Services is reading "Gusher of Lies" By. Robert Bryce.
'I've finally shed my fat suit,' says Katy Hill after dropping more than four stone
Last updated at 3:55 PM
on 07th July 2008

More than two years after giving birth to her first child, former Blue Peter presenter Katy Hill has finally shed her baby weight - and she couldn't be more thrilled.

The 37-year-old, who at one point squeezed into a size 16, is now a svelte size 10 after overhauling her lifestyle and fitness regime.
Katy, who posed in a string bikini to celebrate her new physique, gushes: 'I'm really happy!'

Body of work: Katy Hill shows off her new 9st 6lb frame

Katy suffered a number of health problems during her 2004 pregnancy, including symphysis pubis -
a dysfunction which causes severe pelvic pain - and eventually put on four-and-a-half stone.

'I'd had visions of me wafting around in maternity dresses but it wasn't quite like that.
I had cankles - by the end all I could wear were flip-flops!'

'My husband Trey tells me that it was like I had a fat suit! It looked like someone had got a straw and blown me up!'

Transformation: The former Blue Peter presenter says she's happy to have shed her size 16 'fat suit'

Katy, who plans to move back to England next year, hasn't decided if she'll try for a second child.

She says: 'At the moment I'm enjoying my body.'
Javine Hylton shows off her post-baby figure
Last updated at 12:06 AM on 08th July 2008

Javine Hylton looks half the woman she was after shedding three-and-a-half stone, since the birth of her daughter Angel Mai Hylton Harvey.

The singer, 26, who gave birth in February, has gone from fourteen stone to ten-and-a-half stone, thanks to a combination of diet and exercise.

She told Closer magazine:
"I feel much more confident posing naked this time.
I feel proud of myself, even though I’m not in as good a shape as I’d like.
My body has changed and my boobs are a bit bigger – although they’ve headed south!”.

What a difference four months makes:

“Having Angel has totally changed me,” says Javine.
“Before, if I woke up with a cloud over my head, I’d let it last.
Now I have a beautiful baby, how can I not smile?
And if you smile, it makes them smile.
I feel so much more laid back.”

The singer admits that the first few weeks of motherhood were a struggle.
“I kept bursting into tears and I even asked my mum if she thought I had post-natal depression.
But it was just the shock of having a baby.

“It didn’t help that I got mastitis [inflammation] in both boobs, which was agony.
I had to take antibiotics, which gave Angel thrush in her mouth, so I stopped breastfeeding.

“At that point, I could hardly look in the mirror,” she admits.
“I’d always thought of myself as a fit, athletic person, but I’d spread everywhere!
My bum was enormous – it came round on all sides and stuck out behind me!

Cover girl: Javine's post-bump pictures

“I’d put on four stone while pregnant –

going up to fourteen stone –
and although I’d lost some of the weight, my pre-pregnancy jeans wouldn’t fit.
I’d cover up in Harvey’s biggest T-shirts and tracksuit bottoms.”

Six weeks after giving birth, Javine met personal trainer Tim Hayes.
Tim developed a diet and fitness plan for the new mum, who then weighed twelve-and-a-half stone.
He put her on a strict, five-times-a-week regime of aerobic and core-strength exercises.

“Tim really pushed me, which is what I needed,” says Javine.
“He also put me on a healthy diet.
I used to have toast and Marmite for breakfast, pasta for lunch and then fish and potatoes in the evening.
I was also addicted to crisps.
I used my pregnancy to eat as much as I liked – that’s why I went from ten stone to fourteen stone!”

These days, Javine’s typical menu is porridge with a banana for breakfast, brown rice and veg for lunch, prawn stir-fry for dinner and healthy snacks like sugar snap peas or Brazil nuts.

After fourteen weeks on the regime, Javine has lost another two stone.
She is now ten and a half stone and a healthy size 12.
However, she says:
“I want to get down to my pre-pregnancy weight of ten stone, and shift my wobbly tum.
I’ve just started having a salon treatment called Hypoxi.
It’s a targeted fat-burning programme that helps tone up the area.
I’m seeing results already.

“Harvey didn’t think I could lose all the weight, but he didn’t realise how strong I am.
If I decide to do something I can usually pull it off!” says Javine,
who’s also been recording a new album since the birth.

“It’s been really hard work.
There have been times when Harvey and his friends have come in with a big bucket of KFC and
I sit there with my brown rice and steamed veggies – but I’ve got used to it.”

Harvey and Javine are now planning a holiday in Ibiza, and she says she can’t wait.
“I’m not quite ready for a bikini.
I might try an all-in-one costume with cutaway bits though,” she grins.
The Media Equation

When Fox News Is the Story


Published: July 7, 2008

Like most working journalists, whenever I type seven letters —
Fox News
— a series of alarms begins to whoop in my head:
Danger. Warning. Much mayhem ahead.

Once the public relations apparatus at Fox News is engaged,
there will be the calls to my editors,
keening (and sometimes threatening) e-mail messages, and my requests for interviews will quickly turn into depositions about my intent or who else I am talking to.

And if all that stuff doesn’t slow me down and I actually end up writing something, there might be a large hangover:
Phone calls full of rebuke for a dependent clause in the third to the last paragraph, a ritual spanking in the blogs with anonymous quotes that sound very familiar, and —
if I really hit the jackpot —
the specter of my ungainly headshot appearing on one of Fox News’s shows along with some stern copy about what an idiot I am.

Part of me — the Irish, tribal part — admires Fox News’s ferocious defense of its guys.
I work at a place where editors can make easy sport of teasing apart your flawed copy until it collapses in a steaming pile,
but Lord help those outsiders who make an unwarranted or unfounded attack on me or my work.
Our tactics may be different, but we, too, are strong for our posse.

Media reporting about other media’s approach to producing media is pretty confusing business to begin with.
Feelings, which are always raw for people who make their mistakes in public, will be bruised.
But that does not fully explain the scorched earth between Fox News and those who cover it.

Fox News found a huge runway and enormous success by setting aside the conventions of bloodless objectivity,
but along the way, it altered the rules of engagement between reporters and the media organizations they cover.
Under its chief executive, Roger Ailes, Fox News and its public relations apparatus have waged a permanent campaign on behalf of the channel that borrows its methodology from his days as a senior political adviser to Richard M. Nixon, Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush.

At Fox News, media relations is a kind of rolling opposition research operation intended to keep reporters in line by feeding and sometimes maiming them.
Shooting the occasional messenger is baked right into the process.

As crude as that sounds, it works.
By blacklisting reporters it does not like, planting stories with friendlies at every turn, Fox News has been living a life beyond consequence for years.
Honesty compels me to admit that I have choked a few times at the keyboard when Fox News has come up in a story and it was not absolutely critical to the matter at hand.

But it cuts both ways: Fox News’s amazing coup d’état in the cable news war has very likely been undercovered because the organization is such a handful to deal with.
Fox is so busy playing defense — mentioning it in the same story as CNN can be a high crime —
that its business and journalism accomplishments don’t get traction and the cable station never seems to attain the legitimacy it so clearly craves.

There have been few stories about Bill O’Reilly’s softer side (I’m sure he has one),
and while Shepard Smith’s amazing reporting in New Orleans got some play, he was not cast as one of the journalistic heroes of the disaster.
The fact that Roger Ailes has won both Obie awards and Emmys does not come up a lot,
nor does the fact that he donated a significant chunk of money to upgrade the student newsroom at Ohio University, his alma mater.

Instead, Mr. Ailes and Brian Lewis, his longtime head of public relations, act as if every
organization that covers them is a potential threat and, in the process,
have probably made it far more likely.
And as the cable news race has tightened, because CNN has gained ground during a big election year, Fox News has become more prone to lashing out.
Fun is fun, but it is getting uglier by the day out there.

A little more than a week ago, Jacques Steinberg, a reporter at The New York Times who covers television, wrote a straight-up-the-middle ratings story about cable news.
His article acknowledged that while CNN was using a dynamic election to push Fox News from behind, Fox was still No. 1.
Despite repeated calls, the public relations people at Fox News did not return his requests for comment.
(In a neat trick, while they were ignoring his calls, they e-mailed his boss asking why they had not heard from him.)

After the article ran, Brian Kilmeade and Steve Doocy of “Fox and Friends,” the reliable water carriers on the morning show on the cable network,
did a segment suggesting that Mr. Steinberg’s editor was a disgruntled former employee —
Steven V. Reddicliffe once edited TV Guide, which was until recently owned by the News Corporation —
and that Mr. Steinberg was his trained attack dog.
(The audience was undoubtedly wondering what the heck they were talking about.)

The accompanying photographs were heavily altered, although the audience was probably none the wiser.
Mr. Reddicliffe looked like the wicked witch after a hard night of drinking,
but it was the photo of Mr. Steinberg that stopped traffic when it appeared on the Web at Media Matters side by side with his actual photo.
In a technique familiar to students of vintage German propaganda,
his ears were pulled out, his teeth splayed apart,
his forehead lowered and his nose was widened and enlarged in a way that made him look more like Fagin than the guy I work with.
(Mr. Steinberg told me that as a working reporter who covers Fox News, he was not in a position to comment.
A spokeswoman said the executive in charge of “Fox and Friends” is on vacation and not available for comment but added that altering photos for humorous effect is a common practice on cable news stations.)

It’s a particularly vivid example of how the Fox response team works, but hardly the only one. Julia Angwin of The Wall Street Journal wrote a profile of Roger Ailes in 2005.
Again, her coverage was right up the middle, but that is not the way that Fox News saw it, and she was held out for ridicule over and over in items on various blogs penned by Fox News staff when she jumped the gun on the start date for the Fox business channel.
(Ms. Angwin is on book leave and did not answer a message left on her cellphone.)

Earlier this year, a colleague of mine said, he was writing a story about CNN’s gains in the ratings and was told on deadline by a Fox News public relations executive that if he persisted, “they” would go after him.
Within a day, “they” did, smearing him around the blogs, he said.
(I did not ask him for a comment because the information was of a private nature.)

Some of the avenues of attack are easier to anticipate than others.
Right now, there are advance copies circulating of a reported memoir I wrote about my times as a drug addict and drunk.
I’ve already been called a “crack addict” on Bill O’Reilly’s show, which at least has the virtue of being true, if a little vintage.
Expect a return engagement with some added detail.
I have a bit of an advantage in that my laundry is already hanging on the line, not to mention that with a face made out of potatoes,
the Photoshopped picture of me will have to go a long way to make me any uglier than I actually am.
Having pointed a crooked columnist finger at Fox, at least I have it coming.
Not so for many of the beat reporters who go to work every day confronted by a public relations machine that will go feral if it doesn’t get what it wants.

When I started calling around about Fox News, Mr. Lewis, the public relations head, made himself available on very short notice on the Fourth of July.
He patiently explained that while yes, the game had changed, it was hardly in the way I was describing.
There are no dark ops, he said, and no blacklist — “a myth” — only good relationships and bad ones.

Mr. Lewis said that members of his staff were not in the business of altering photos, that they had no control over stories that appeared on “Fox and Friends” or other shows,
and he pointed out that it makes their job harder when they go after reporters.
He called my suggestion that there was something anti-Semitic about the depiction of Mr. Steinberg “vile and untrue.”
Mr. Lewis denied that his staff had threatened one of my colleagues or planted private information about him on blogs.

That comes as a surprise to reporters I talked to who say they have received e-mail messages from Fox News public relations staff that contained doctored photos, anonymous quotes and nasty items about competitors.
And two former Fox employees said that they had participated in precisely those kinds of activities but had signed confidentiality agreements and could not say so on the record.

“Yes, we are an aggressive department in a passive industry, and believe me, the executives and talent appreciate it,”
Mr. Lewis said, adding that with the 24-hour news cycle and the proliferation of blogs, a new kind of engagement and activism was required.

“We are the biggest target in the industry and we accept that,” he said.
“We embrace controversy,” but he said that he and his colleagues respect that reporters have a job to do.

Many of the television-beat reporters I called had horror stories, but few were willing to be quoted.
In the last several years, reporters from The Associated Press,
several large newspapers and various trade publications have said they were shut out from getting their calls returned because of stories they had written.
Editors do not want to hear why your calls are not being returned,
they just want you to fix the problem, or perhaps they will fix it by finding someone else to do your job.

David Folkenflik, now the media reporter for National Public Radio, ended up on the outs with Fox News in 2001 when he was at The Baltimore Sun.
After he wrote that Fox’s Geraldo Rivera had not been at the site of an incident of friendly fire in Afghanistan as he had told viewers,
Mr. Folkenflik said, his calls to Fox News were not returned for more than 15 months.

“My sense was that it was designed to make it appear that I was having trouble doing my job, but also to intimate that the people who cross them will be shut out,” he said.

Mr. Folkenflik said he did not take it personally because it was not aimed just at him.
“I think it is a notably aggressive effort to manage the Fox News brand and image,” he said.
“I think it is suffused with a political sensibility, and I don’t think it is any secret that it comes from the top with Roger Ailes.
They behave less like a competitive news outlet and more like a political campaign when it comes to managing coverage.”

But he holds no grudge.

“I currently have a perfectly good relationship with Fox News,” Mr. Folkenflik said.
“I touch base with them all the time, and I write the good and bad news as it occurs.”

Bill Carter has covered television for The New York Times for many years and has always had a good working relationship with Fox News,
but he was appalled to see what he viewed as an anti-Semitic caricature of Mr. Steinberg, a colleague and a friend.

“I have not had a big problem with them, in part because their success has been such a great story, but this seemed over the line and really hateful,” Mr. Carter said.
“It doesn’t seem like you can deal with them professionally.
You do this kind of thing to a guy who’s writing a story for a newspaper?”

Fox News has long held that it is its politics and not its tactics that set it apart and require such vigilance.
But working reporters have been shaking their heads for years about the nightmare of dealing with Fox News and as a result, the antagonism they believe they are fighting against seems to be on the march.

Mr. Lewis made it clear that Fox News has no problem working with reporters when they don’t have an agenda, and of course, I called with a very clear one.
For the record, everyone I dealt with at Fox News in connection with this column was polite, highly responsive, and got right to the point, while still not giving ground on a single material fact.
A guy could get used to that.

E-mail: carr@nytimes.com

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