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FOX News has been hacked. The news giant reported that vital emails have been plundered and will soon be available on a variety of sites. The attack is reminiscent of the assault that Sony suffered earlier this year. FOX News is attempting to get ahead of the scandal. The first of many revelations coming out of the New York-based news channel is that news anchors were hired based on how they fared on a variation of the Milgram Obedience Experiment.

The original Milgram Obedience Experiment was carried out in the early 1960s. Stanley Milgram, a professor at Yale University, wanted to understand how the German people in World War Two were co-opted into participating in ruthless acts of aggression at home and abroad. He created an experiment to discern the effect that authority figures had on the everyday person. The results were telling.

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FOX News said its hacked emails would reveal that its news anchors undergo a variety of vigorous tests to ensure that they will be able to give America “fair and balanced” information. There are a variety of methods to ensure that female news anchors radiate the angry cheerleader look that the channel is known for. FOX journalists who will sit in front of the camera and educate millions of Americans must be experts in controversies ranging from Did Adam and Eve use Western or English saddles when riding dinosaurs? to Do Jews have antlers or horns? In the last sentence of the press statement from FOX, it was disclosed that a special version of Stanley Milgram’s Obedience Experiment was used to ensure that FOX News professionals have the right character for the job.

After repeated calls from CNN, NBC News, and others, FOX News explained exactly how the experiment was utilized. The job applicant (the “teacher”) met with the “learner”. Much like Milgram’s study, the two were separated so that they could not see each other. The experiment proceeded in a similar manner that the original had. The teacher asked questions, and if the learner answered incorrectly, the teacher would apply an electric shock. However, the true or false questions were framed with “A real American believes…”  For example,

  • A real American believes that the wall between church and state is a fiction created by communists.
  • A real American believes that Israel’s territory should include all the land it controlled under King Solomon.
  • A real American knows that homosexuality is a choice caused by demons.

On average, a successful job applicant/teacher shocked a resistant student into silence within ten queries.

The second round of experiments tested the teachers’ ability to shock students who belonged to various un-American groups: poor, black, Hispanic, women, gay, transsexual, liberal, skeptical, and fans of evidence-based shows like NOVA, the rebooted Cosmos, and, yes, even Mythbusters. The would-be news anchors who did best simply started with the highest voltage possible, held the shock button down, and didn’t bother with asking those pesky questions.

FOX News spokesperson P.R. Jurer stated, “To the uneducated, these methods may sound extreme, but we live in extreme times where the unemployment rate is going down and more Americans than ever before have health insurance. Our country needs television journalists with traditional morals to make sure we can collectively navigate these dark times.”

Meanwhile, the nation holds its breath and awaits other revelations the hacked emails will reveal.


*This Poe was originally posted in August 2015

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Andrew Hall escaped a childhood of religious indoctrination and is now a non-miserable human being. He's made millions of people laugh as well as angry. (He hopes he's made the right people annoyed.) Targets...