Well, this isn’t good (boldface mine):
The memo above has been puttering around Facebook for a day or so. It describes a top-down, command-and-control approach to cable-news watching at a unit of the Food and Drug Administration. Fox News, it signals, will be now be entrusted with informing some of our government’s top scientific talent. In addition to the president of the United States, of course.
A complaint of some sort appears to have triggered the memo. “I was alerted by a member in your group and I wanted to let everyone know that the reason for the change from CNN to FOX,” it reads, in part. “The reason for the change is that a decision from the current administration administrative officials has requested that all monitors, under our control, on the White Oak Campus, display FOX news. Sorry for the inconvenience, but I am unable to change any of the monitors to any other news source at this time,” reads the memo, whose author complies with the network’s silly uppercase fetish.
An FDA spokeswoman tells the Erik Wemple Blog: “There was no directive or memorandum from the Administration that went out to employees about broadcast news channels displaying on monitors in common areas throughout the FDA’s White Oak campus.” A “variety” of news sources is carried on such monitors, says an agency official, noting that the email above came from “a customer service representative from the FDA’s Office of Facilities responding to a group of employees.”
And this customer service representative, we’re asked to believe, was somehow mistaken about the agency’s channel dictates?
…So there are a lot of scientists and doctors at Silver Spring-based CBER. It’s a cohort that might not be inclined to welcome a Fox News logo staring at them in the complex’s common areas. Why? Because Fox News, for starters, doesn’t generally approve of government regulation. Witness this December 2014 segment on the morning show “Fox & Friends” — the worst spectacle on all of televised news — in which host Clayton Morris whips up a frenzy over the possibility that confectionery sprinkles could be banned by the agency as part of an offensive against artificial trans fats. It was a bogus scare.
…A source familiar with the CBER office setup confirms that TV monitors are tuned to Fox News.
By itself, this is funny, in an absurd way. But you add all of these little things together and it’s soft authoritarianism purveying lies and propaganda. Not good.