Friday, September 30, 2005

More On The Saudi Prince

Frank Gaffney, Jr., has made a few more points about Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal, recent investor in Fox News:
"Al-Waleed is said be the world’s fifth richest man and now NewsCorp’s fourth largest voting shareholder (behind the Murdoch family, Liberty Media and fund giant Fidelity Management & Research Co)....

"[After his check was rejected by Mayor Giuliani] the prince released a statement that blamed the United States and its support for Israel for the devastating 9/11 attacks....

"Shortly after the check fiasco, he permitted the CBS program 60 Minutes to profile him and his hyper-rich, internationally jet-setting lifestyle....[H]e told his incredulous interviewer, Ed Bradley, that that Saudi Arabia is a country with 'no problems.' When pressed, he insisted, 'What I'm telling you is Saudi Arabia has no civil unrest, no civil disobedience. Sorry. Saudi Arabia is a very stable country. Sure…we had these bombs here and there, but they were all related to a certain subject.'

"Even more troubling than having a Saudi spinmeister, even a lousy one, at the decision-making table of America’s most successful, and conservative, television network is another aspect of Al-Waleed’s deal with Mr. Murdoch. The Australian entrepreneur has reportedly also given the prince the unfiltered ability to broadcast Saudi-produced materials directly into America on Murdoch’s satellite....Prince Al-Waleed’s Rotana Audio Visual Company, which operates TV channels in the Middle East, has signed a deal with DirecTV, the TV-satellite firm controlled by NewsCorp. As a result, it would seem Rotana will be able to beam its programs into U.S. cable boxes without interference from federal regulators, or anybody else."

More details about the deal between Murdoch and the Saudi prince are available. Not being any kind of expert in media economics, I don't understand all of what Gaffney is saying. But my intuition tells me that these details are ripe for exploitation.

Broadcasting in Saudi is controlled and censored by the Saudi government. When I send certain articles to my American friends in Saudi, I have to copy and paste entire stories if the links I'm using are not approved ones. Can Saudi extend their own information-control policy to the media in the United States by means of financial investment? Or has Saudi already quietly extended their policy and we don't even realize it?

I may be way out of line here, but I have to ask the following question: Who holds large shares of ABC/Disney, which owns WMAL Radio, the station which dismissed Michael Graham for making negative statements about Islam?

20 Comments:

At 9/30/2005 12:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

 
At 9/30/2005 2:14 PM, Blogger Esther said...

I can't believe Rupert would do this. I thought he was very pro-American... I guess I seem really naive that he would put his principals below the needs of his wallet.

 
At 9/30/2005 2:32 PM, Blogger Mr. Ducky said...

What Gaffney doesn't seem to understand is that the prince wants to make money. You don't do that by trying to censor FAUX news (they already censor the news anyway).

I swear you people sound like the moronic left who were all upset that Air America is aired on Clear Channel.

 
At 9/30/2005 7:10 PM, Blogger The Exile said...

This may explain why Fox News has went downhill so badly lately.

It's become tabloid TV: the latest missing person or the latest natural disaster. There's very little substance, political or otherwise, there any longer.

 
At 9/30/2005 9:03 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Duck,
Your words: the moronic left
I'm guessing that you think the right is moronic as well. Where is your blog so that we can see your views, of which you seem so certain?

The Saudi prince doesn't need to make money. Of course, he might want to.

Also, Wahhabism may be more important to him than making money. Money won't buy him a place in the Islamic version of Paradise, but waging jihad will.

Rupert, on the other hand, could be all about the money.

PS: Have you checked out Beamish's invitation? See
http://thecrankfiles.blogspot.com/2005/09/adopt-troll.html
You have the chance to start your own thread and educate all of us.

 
At 9/30/2005 9:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think the duck has a blog always...we used to post over at Horowitz's "Frontpage Magazine .com" but we currently chat together rather regularly at big bubba's, beaks, here, and lately over at mustang's. I sometimes feel like I'm being followed by Zarathustra's shadow. Only sometimes I see two shadows. Once, I even saw three. Just call me paranoid.

-FJ

ps - I like a straight-forward honest Marx quoting bird. That's the duck! He's taught me loads!

 
At 9/30/2005 10:05 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

I sometimes feel like I'm being followed by Zarathustra's shadow. LOL!

Yes, I've seen a few of those chats over at BB's. Last summer, over there Duck accused of watching prepubescent children. That made me wonder whom he might be watching.

I also know that Duck doesn't have his own blog. But he should! All Marxists need their own blogs. The Duck has so much wisdom to share that it's a shame he's limited by the space in these comment boxes.

PS: I enjoy discussions with lucid dissenters. I do not enjoy discussions with ranters, especially of the name-hurling variety.

PPS: Too bad that you, FJ, do not have your own blog. I enjoy our chats. Stop by here any time.

PPPS: I never found time to read those books you recommended to me last summer--the ones about right-brain thinking; the library period on them expired, and I had to return them. What is the author's name again?

PPPPS: I've been thinking about putting up an article about brain "stuff." If I get it done (probably the second week in December), I hope you'll come by to comment. I want to do an article about how brain-stem-invasive acoustic neuroma changes one's life, even though the surgery is successful. My husband had that surgery back in 1993.

 
At 9/30/2005 10:13 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Exile,
I have noticed the same. So have some of my friends.

 
At 9/30/2005 10:16 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Duck accused of watching

My poor typing! Make that Duck accused me of watching

 
At 10/01/2005 12:07 AM, Blogger samwich said...

AOW, can the right brain-left brain baloney. It applies to women only. Men are upper brain-lower brain. Think about it
S........for stinker

 
At 10/01/2005 2:11 AM, Blogger David Schantz said...

The only thing I use a TV for is watching VHS & DVDs. From time to time I think about hooking it to a dish or cable, then I think of where the money goes and it doesn't get hooked up.

God Bless America, God Save The Republic

 
At 10/01/2005 6:46 AM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Samwich,
Much of the discussion about right brain/left brain is theory, but I find it helpful to know about the possibilites because I am a teacher. I encounter many learning "differences," to which I usually refer as "disabilites." Knowing more about specific brain functions helps me to teach to students' strengths in order to get the information in; from there, each student synthesizes.

I wasn't thinking in terms of male/female. But those officially identified as "learning disabled" are predominantly male. The reason?

Also, certain centers of the brain have different functions. I have found that certain activities and therapies help to strengthen specific abilities. Neural pathways can be created. IQ is not set in stone. I've seen those last two in my own experience with students and my grandmother, who suffered a severe stroke. A former student of mine had no corpus callosum (excised almost totally due to a tumor); she could sing and do arithemetic, but writing an essay and holding a long conversation were impossible for her.

I firmly believe that the label "learning disability" is a trap and often used as an excuse. All of us have some kind of "learning disability."

Upper brain vs. lower brain, as in reasoned thought vs. baser physical desires?

 
At 10/01/2005 6:50 AM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

David,
I have a satellite dish, but don't get the top package. Too expensive!

I use the TV primarily to watch news. I have a few favorite weekly shows--not many. Sometimes I find a decent program on The History Channel. Certain cable/satellite channels play "the old" movies, and I find some gems there.

Network television is "a wasteland," to quote T.S. Eliot and Jack Paar.

 
At 10/01/2005 7:50 AM, Blogger Bassizzzt said...

You know what? We've actually started watching MSNBC more often since this "buy" happened over at FOX News.

I have tried multiple times emailing Kim Lazure, one of O'reilly's producers, to get Andy Whitehead on the show.

From this Saudi purchase of stock, I doubt now that it will happen.

 
At 10/01/2005 10:01 AM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Bassizzzt,
I've noticed that MSNBC has Dr. Walid Phares on with some regularity. Fox used to, but doesn't now. I had thought that perhaps MSNBC had a new and exclusive contract with Phares; I'm now guessing otherwise.

Interesting about those producers at O'Reilly's. I also noted O'Reilly's perfunctory coverage of Michael Graham. O'Reilly is big on the immigration issue, but I notice he doesn't talk much about the Wahhabist threat using our lax immigration policies.

I have contracted O'Reilly's show many, many times about the Islamic Saudi Academy. Has O'Reilly ever covered the stories I found (and in the Washington Post, no less)? Not to my knowledge.

Don't hold your breath for O'Reilly to have Andrew Whitehead on the show. Does anyone put him on the air--prime time, major channel? It's pretty much the same with Robert Spencer, too.

A friend told me (I didn't see the show) that the last time O'Reilly interviewed Ibrahim Hooper, O'Reilly handled him with kid gloves. The last time I saw Hooper taken to task was over the ISA, on a 10:00 show on MSNBC.

Personally, I believe that the inter-faith movement and the cries of Islamophobia and the Saudi investment in Fox have combined to make O'Reilly silent on the issue.

PS: On Capitol Hill, Senator Schumer is the only one I know of who pays any attention to the ISA.

 
At 10/01/2005 10:41 AM, Blogger Bassizzzt said...

I know I've seen Emerson on both FOX and MSNBC, not so sure about Robert Spencer.

As far as emailing O'reilly, let's both blast him with emails citing your thesis as good measure to start with (how the interfaith movement and cries of Islamophobia have shut him up and also the Saudi investment in Fox).

if we can get more people to do this, maybe it'll flare him up and he'll start talking.

 
At 10/01/2005 11:54 AM, Blogger Gindy said...

From the princes words we can assume he just wants to make a profit the way all of us do.

But, my real fear is that he has another goal which would be to "encourage" Murdoch and Fox to change it's reporting of the Mid East conflict. They are the only station I know that actually uses the word terrorist. I am more worried about that than their audio deal (even though I think they have a goal with that as well).

 
At 10/02/2005 9:51 PM, Blogger Mr. Beamish the Instablepundit said...

I find I'm most informed about what's going on in the world by not watching the news at all.

I read the innernets, man.

 
At 10/02/2005 10:04 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Mr. Beamish,
I'm getting to the same point. Love those innernets!

 
At 10/08/2005 10:25 AM, Blogger Rich Molumby said...

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