The other day I was leafing through some business publications when I catch this big, full-page ad for Lou Dobbs.
It seems he's a year into his return at CNN and he's trumpeting that he is No. 1.
And I'm thinking to myself, "Hey, I thought my show was the No. 1 business show?"
And I'm worrying, "What happened?"
Then I caught the fine print, "No. 1 evening business show on cable."
Sure enough, Lou is trouncing CNBC at that hour, with 496,000 viewers. Here's the little detail he left out. The fact that this show is getting 747,000 viewers two hours earlier.
747,000 to 496,000.
Electronic Media columnist Michelle Greppi raised that issue, to which a CNN spokesperson apparently replied, we don't consider Cavuto competition, since his show runs at 4 p.m. We're talking evening business shows.
And paranoid person that I am, I got to thinking, they're right. We're not a fair comparison.
We're on earlier — when household viewership levels are decidedly smaller.
And we're not in as many homes — about 8 million fewer homes than CNN.
And we're not growing at Lou's 158 percent year-over-year rate — we're growing 223 percent.
And we're not just beating business shows at any and all hours — we're beating the news shows opposite us at our hour.
I guess I wouldn't want to compare us either.
But let's be real, selectively saying what you want to say in an ad is lying.
When FOX claims it's the No. 1 news channel, it is.
When FOX claims it has the No. 1 news show with Shepherd Smith, it does.
When FOX claims it has the No. 1 in all of cable news — Bill O'Reilly — it's true.
And when FOX claims it has the No. 1 business show on cable, it does.
We don't fudge it or finesse it. We say it.
And if it's not true, we don't report it. It'd be like me going out and saying, "No. 1 business show anchored by an Italian-American who has a fondness for Yoddles."
Let's get real here. You're either on top. Or you're not. And you're either telling the truth, or you're telling a lie.
Let Bill Clinton parse what the meaning of "is" is.
Let CNN figure out what the meaning of something simpler, the truth.
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Watch Neil Cavuto's Common Sense weekdays at 4 p.m. ET on Your World with Neil Cavuto.