On the Friday, May 21, The O’Reilly Factor, host Bill O’Reilly highlighted the latest right-leaning musical parody produced by singer Ray Stevens, this time taking aim at illegal immigration and noting the tougher treatment of illegal immigrants in other countries. The song, titled "Come to the USA," begins:
If you thinkin’ about illegal immigration,
Be careful when you’re choosin’ the nation
‘Cause breakin’ the law in some countries is frowned upon.
On Tuesday’s The O’Reilly Factor, host Bill O’Reilly held a discussion with FNC Strategic Analyst and retired Lieutenant Colonel Ralph Peters about the New York Times leaking information on U.S. military activity, as Peters charged that the Times was endangering covert agents: "They tipped our secret operations, our black operations approach to the Iranians, to the Syrians, to the terrorists. It made it much harder and much more dangerous for our agents, for our special operators to collect intelligence, to take direct action, to protect our country, to advance our interests." He and O’Reilly soon added:
RETIRED LIEUTENANT COLONEL RALPH PETERS: And it's also hurt us with countries that are pseudo-friends, such as Saudi Arabia and Pakistan because, and Yemen, because it's said that we're going to run operations against them.
BILL O'REILLY: Yeah, they don't want their people to know they're cooperating with the United States in any kind of a mission or operation, Yemen in particular.
The FNC analyst also recounted some of the Times’s past transgressions against American national security:
On Monday’s The O’Reilly Factor, during the show’s regular "Reality Check" segment, FNC host O’Reilly seemed to pick up on a NewsBusters item which highlighted ABC’s Sam Donaldson and Cokie Roberts defending Mexican President Felipe Calderon using his speech in Congress as a forum to criticize Arizona’s effort to enforce laws against illegal immigration. In their defense of Calderon on Sunday's This Week show's Roundtable segment, the the two ABC News veterans brought up past American Presidents criticizing communist dictators in China and the Soviet Union.
Below is a transcript of the relevant portion of the "Reality Check" from the Monday, May 24, The O’Reilly Factor on FNC:
Bill O'Reilly on Monday offered an obviously satirical solution to the Gulf oil spill that has generated some ire from the usual suspects on the left: "stuff every member of NBC News in that hole."
As readers are well aware, the Fox News personality has had an ongoing war with General Electric and its television subsidiary over its dramatic left-leaning approach to covering the news.
With that in mind, while chatting with the folks from Fox & Friends by phone Monday about a variety of issues, O'Reilly made the following tongue-in-cheek remark when the subject of the crisis in the Gulf of Mexico surfaced (video follows with partial transcript):
It's turned into something of a week for TV hosts, if not to bite, then at least to nibble hard on the hands that feed them . . .
First, as noted here, on Friday Joe Scarborough passed along the comment of an unnamed conservative biggie who wondered "what the hell [Rand Paul] was doing on MSNBC?", where during an interview with Rachel Maddow he caused controversy with his comments on the Civil Rights Act.
Today, it was Howard Kurtz's turn. In the wake of Campbell Brown's withdrawal from CNN, in which she cited her show's poor ratings, Kurtz, host of Reliable Sources also on CNN wondered whether the network's business strategy of offering news in contrast to the opinion-oriented programming on Fox News and MSNBC is "viable." For good measure, Kurtz also managed to suggest that Brown, Connie Chung and Paula Zahn—all of whose CNN shows failed—weren't strong enough personalities to attract an audience during the 8 PM hour, up against the likes of O'Reilly and Olbermann. Ouch!
On Thursday’s The O’Reilly Factor, FNC’s Megyn Kelly appeared to give her take on the Arizona immigration law that the has so upset the left in America, relaying her conclusion that the law actually holds the police to higher standards against racial discrimination and the conditions under which police can enforce the law than current federal laws. Kelly: "And my legal opinion is, it is a little bit like the federal law, but if anything, it's less problematic. Did you know that the Supreme Court already ruled a few years ago that under federal law, cops can pull you over for no reason and demand to see your immigration papers? For no reason. They don't have to have reasonable suspicion."
She went on to recount a relevant Supreme Court case:
And the court, this was written by then-Chief Justice Rehnquist who said in that case, hold on, let me get it because it's here in front of me some place. He said the officers did not need reasonable suspicion to ask Menia for her name, date, and place of birth, or immigration status. The cops do not need reasonable suspicion to ask you about immigration status. Under Arizona law, they do. They do.
Referring to restrictions against police application of the law, Kelly concluded: "It's tougher. Arizona's tougher."
On Friday’s The O’Reilly Factor on FNC, Good Morning America co-anchor George Stephanopoulos of ABC appeared as a guest and discussed President Obama’s reaction to the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. When host Bill O’Reilly asked if some of Obama’s recent attacks on oil companies amounted to "grandstanding," Stephanopoulos seemed to agree and pointed out that, since President Obama took office, his administration has approved "dozens of these projects without getting the proper environmental clearances," and characterized Obama as being "Reaganesque" in distancing himself from the problem: "He was kind of trying to do a little bit of a Reaganesque move there by blaming the federal government and separating himself a bit from the federal government."
But when O’Reilly wondered if a comparison could be made between the "lateness" of President Obama’s reaction to the oil spill and of President Bush’s reaction to Hurricane Katrina, Stephanopoulos saw such a comparison as a "stretch," but left open the possibility that, over the long term, if Obama does not deal with the problem adequately, he could be blamed by the public and the outcome would be seen as "the President’s responsibility":
Last night on his program, Bill O'Reilly talked with Fox News contributor and friend of the Media Research Center Bernard Goldberg about the findings of an MRC study on the media's coverage of the new Arizona anti-illegal immigration law.
Goldberg noted that he had a minor quibble with our study, arguing that stories focused on rallies against the law were bound to be skewed in their soundbites against the law, by virtue of the crowd at the venue being overwhelmingly opposed. Of course, Goldberg conceded, it should be incumbent on the media to balance coverage of those rallies with interviews with people who support the law.
For the record, our MRC Reality Check study noted about that soundbite count that it:
Conservative author Ann Coulter on Friday in one sentence perfectly summed up the media's reaction to the identity of the man that caused a state of panic in New York's Times Square last weekend: "They're working through their grief of the car bomber not being a Tea Partier."
Such was marvelously said on Fox News's "O'Reilly Factor."
After playing video of a CBS Evening News segment covered by NewsBusters Thursday, the host said to his guest, "They're doing it. They're not saying this is a mad man, he should be hung. These Islamic jihadists are threatening our lives. They're not saying that, they being the mainstream media in general."
That was the only invitation required for Coulter to say what dearly needed to be said about how the press have behaved since the Times Square bomber was arrested (video follows with partial transcript and commentary):
If you listen to the Obama administration, Democrats, and the mainstream media, Fox News is just an echo chamber for Republican talking points as well as a proud defender of former President George W. Bush.
Fox fans counter that this is the only television network where liberals and conservatives regularly are allowed to voice their views while getting challenged by hosts and anchors.
Thursday's "O'Reilly Factor" was a perfect example of this premise.
The host's guest was Karl Rove, and the former Bush adviser was certainly NOT treated with kid gloves by the very contentious and argumentative host.
As you watch the following clip, try to imagine a member of the Obama administration being so forcefully grilled on any mainstream television station (video follows with transcript):
Bill O'Reilly on Wednesday said the Obama administration has started a new war with Fox News.
"As you may remember, the President and his team harshly criticized Fox News last fall for not being fair. And that led to a vigorous back and forth between the FNC troop and the White House, which of course jazzed our ratings up a bit. Then things kind of died down."
After White House press secretary Robert Gibbs' childish attack on FNC's Wendell Goler Tuesday, O'Reilly thinks the ceasefire has officially ended.
"The lingering issue is that Fox News is by far the toughest media outlet on President Obama, and he doesn't like it" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
There's a cynical theme growing in the media that Faisal Shahzad, the man accused of attempting to set off a car bomb in New York's Times Square Saturday, was driven to violence by the loss of his job, the loss of his house, and his anger towards former President George W. Bush.
In all of this theorizing -- or what some might call psychobabble -- those making the assertion have yet to ponder if six years of Bush Derangement Syndrome might also be involved.
For over a year, Americans have been warned that so-called "hate speech" directed at Barack Obama and Democrats by conservative talk show hosts such as Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, and Sean Hannity, as well as others at Fox News, is going to manifest itself in violent acts against elected officials and/or our nation.
With this in mind mightn't years of "hate speech" directed at Bush and Republicans by liberal talk radio hosts and MSNBC in particular have incited Shahzad's anger to such an extent that he decided to become a domestic terrorist?
On Friday's The O'Reilly Factor on FNC, substitute anchor Juan Williams devoted a segment to the recent inclusion of Iran on the United Nations Commission on the Status for Women, despite the draconian treatment of women by government authorities in the nation. The FNC host was reminded of Libya's leadership of the U.N. Human Rights Commission in 2003. Williams:
Another outrage courtesy of our friends at the U.N. Iran has just been selected to sit on the United Nations commission on human, on women's rights. Iran, which requires that women who don't dress modestly enough get stoned or lashed. Iran, which threatens to arrest women with suntans. I guess we shouldn't be shocked. In 2003, Libya was selected to head up the U.N. Human Rights Commission.
Williams brought aboard author Brigitte Gabriel for further discussion of the issue. Below is a complete transcript of the segment from the Friday, April 30, The O'Reilly Factor on FNC:
Conservative author Ann Coulter Friday said she's never seen the press lie about any issue as much as they have about the new anti-illegal immigration law in Arizona.
"Everyone is blatantly lying about what this law does," she told Juan Williams who was filling in for the regular host of Fox News's "O'Reilly Factor."
"I've never seen anything, a law lied about, any public issue lied about so much," she continued.
"And I don't mean commentators on other stations. I mean, they are delivering the news, claiming that this is going to be racial profiling. The cops can stop anyone. It's like Nazi Germany. Just blatant, blatant lying" (video follows with transcript and commentary, h/t The Right Scoop):
On Monday's Joy Behar Show on HLN, as host Behar discussed controversial political commentators with guests Phil Donahue and Republican strategist Alex Castellanos, Donahue praised the success of far-left MSNBC hosts Ed Schultz and Keith Olbermann, and lamented not having included a "Worst Person" segment in his short-lived MSNBC show. Donahue: "Worse, worser, worsest, I wish I thought of that. Maybe I would still be on the air. But I`m watching this. I see, first of all, I`m crazy about Ed Schultz, although he`s come a long way without my support. Why he didn`t have a show earlier I don`t know."
Behar played an unusual part as she argued against Donahue from a conservative point-of-view, suggesting that Schultz and Olbermann are "radical," and defending FNC from charges by Donahue that liberal voices who praise President Obama are not included on the news network.
But she ended up agreeing with his claim that primetime shows on FNC -- which he referred to as "shout shows" presumably referring to The O'Reilly Factor and the Hannity show -- do not feature liberal voices, ignoring the regular inclusion of liberals like Juan Williams and Alan Colmes on The O'Reilly Factor, while even on the Hannity show at least one liberal commentator is usually present during the show's nightly "Great American Panel" segment:
On Monday's The O'Reilly Factor on FNC, substitute host Laura Ingraham and FNC analyst Bernard Goldberg discussed the mainstream media's double standard in handwringing over whether peaceful Tea Party protesters will inspire violence while actual violence perpetrated at left-leaning rallies is ignored. After playing a clip of police officers in Phoenix being hit by bottles thrown by protesters who oppose Arizona's planned crackdown on illegal immigration, Ingraham set up Goldberg: "Why are we surprised when we have some thugs out there in Phoenix over the weekend causing trouble? And we don't know who is responsible, but there was thuggish behavior. Meanwhile, still hearing about the Tea Parties that were largely peaceful, of course."
Fox News contributor Bernie Goldberg hit back at Jon Stewart today, saying the "Daily Show" host was "throwing spitballs at a battleship" by attacking the Fox News Channel.
The back-and-forth between Stewart and Goldberg began when the former leveled accusations of hypocrisy, claiming Goldberg criticized others for generalizing while doing so himself. Stewart responded to Goldberg's retort with a musical number presumably titled "Go F--k Yourself."
Goldberg said he had "no problem with what [Stewart] did last night," and was "flattered" that he "devoted half of his show last night to me." But Goldberg went on to call a group of Stewart's most devoted fans "sewer rats" for trolling his site with vulgarity during the past couple days, and told Stewart to "man up."
Comedian Jon Stewart Tuesday responded to Bernie Goldberg's criticism of "The Daily Show" host by performing a Gospel tune with the lyrics "Go f--k yourselves."
As a little background, Stewart last week went after Fox News and Goldberg ending the segment, "I've said it before, and I'll say it again: Go f--k yourselves."
This prompted a response from Goldberg on Monday's "O'Reilly Factor" wherein he accused Stewart of being "Jay Leno with a much smaller audience, but you get to say the f-bomb."
After a lengthy segment Tuesday addressing Goldberg's admonition -- which included the comedian actually admitting that there is liberal bias in the media!!! -- Stewart led a choir in vulgarity-laden song (video follows with partial transcript and commentary, song begins at 9:10, h/t Mediaite):
Bernie Goldberg on Monday accused Jon Stewart of being a gutless comedian that is much harder on Tea Partiers and Fox News personalities than liberal media members.
Appearing on "The O'Reilly Factor," Goldberg admitted that "The Daily Show" host was right when he said last week that FNC anchors and hosts often make generalizations about liberals.
But "when you had [New York Times columnist] Frank Rich on your show, who generalizes all the time about conservatives and Republicans being bigots," Goldberg said as if speaking directly to Stewart, "you didn't ask him a single tough question."
"You gave him a lap dance. You practically had your tongue down his throat."
The former CBS Newser continued, "You are just a safe, Jay Leno with a much smaller audience, but you get to say the f-bomb, which gives your incredibly unsophisticated audience the illusion, the illusion that you're courageous and that you're a renegade" (video follows with partial transcript, h/t The Right Scoop):
NBC host Norah O'Donnell is taking it from all angles for pulling the race card on Newt Gingrich last Friday.
Speaking at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference, Gingrich said "shooting three-point shots may be clever, but it doesn’t put anybody to work,” referring to President Obama's basketball skills. Norah O'Donnell embarrassed herself Friday by claiming the comment had racial undertones.
Since then, commentators on the left and right have criticized O'Donnell's race-baiting. Bill O'Reilly and Juan Williams have both condemned her remark, and Gingrich himself has repudiated the accusation.
"The left is becoming a parody of itself," Gingrich said Tuesday morning. He added that "it's relatively hard to go from 'we need someone who is a good president more than we need three point shots' to" racism.
On Wednesday's The O'Reilly Factor on FNC, substitute host Laura Ingraham and FNC analyst Bernard Goldberg discussed the mainstream media's double standard in highlighting bad behavior by extreme and atypical members of the Tea Party movement while ignoring bad behavior by left-wing protesters. After showing a clip of anti-war protesters burning an American flag and shouting incendiary accusations about the CIA and the war on terrorism, Ingraham observed: "That video was striking. And the sentiment expressed, the vile comments. But you've got to search for the coverage of that. I mean, you had to, you had to hunt, with those little metal detectors, to find that coverage anywhere."
Goldberg complained about media treatment of Tea Party activists: "These fringe events at Tea Party rallies, whether they're nasty signs or these alleged shouting of racial slurs, which I am convinced at this point never happened, this fits into the narrative of most mainstream news reporters, that the Tea Party people are not too smart, they're bigots. So when you see a nasty sign, which I'm against and you're against, but when you see one of these signs, they report it as, if not typical, certainly not unusual."
Goldberg soon highlighted charges of racism by conservative activists recently made by Democratic Congressman Steve Cohen, and noted the irony that Cohen himself has been the target of racist and anti-Semitic attacks by fellow Democrats who want his predominantly black congressional district in Tennessee to elect a black candidate in his place. Goldberg:
"If you oppose the Obama administration, you must be demeaned and neutralized."
So said Fox News's Bill O'Reilly Monday about the state of today's media.
"Ever since the Tea Party protest began last summer, the left-wing media in America has been attacking the movement," he began his Talking Points Memo.
"From the jump, the Tea Party protesters never had a chance," O'Reilly continued. "As soon as they objected to President Obama's big government vision, the left-wing media swooped in" (video follows with transcript):
On Wednesday’s The O’Reilly Factor, FNC host Bill O’Reilly took the time to speak with an African-American Tea Party activist named Kevin Jackson about his experiences at Tea Party events and what he thinks of liberal commentators – presumably referring to a number of MSNBC hosts – who have charged that racism is common among Tea Party activists. O’Reilly asked of Jackson: "Okay, now obviously you know the controversy. There have been a number of commentators that have called the Tea Party people racists, branded them, you know, a white power organization or whatever you want to call it. So you hear that and you say what?"
Jackson defended the integrity of Tea Party activists:
Last night, Bill O'Reilly used recent instances of inflamed, occasionally violent liberal protests to give his viewers a lesson in Media Bias 101. Lefties dominate the mainstream press, and are reluctant to cover events that don't suit their agendas, he stated.
O'Reilly showed a number of clips of just the latest instances of leftist political outrage (video and transcript below the fold). He concluded that "One side gets scrutinized. The other side gets a pass. Awful." Indeed, while it seems one can hardly pick up a newspaper or turn on the television without hearing about the horrible, violent racists in the Tea Party movement, there has been relatively little coverage of the left's violence and vitriol.
CNN's ratings woes continue. The cable news network trails its three competitors in every prime time slot. The Fox News Channel, meanwhile, is enjoying record ratings.
Even Joy Behar, HLN's pseudo-newscaster at the 9 pm slot, beat CNN's Larry King Live 21 times during the first quarter of 2010. King suffered the worst ratings of his CNN career.
Anderson Cooper, who used to rely on King's historically impressive viewership for a ratings boost of his own, dropped 42 percent of his viewers. All this despite his coverage of major news events this year such as the Haiti earthquake and the health care battle on the Hill.
Williams made this preposterous claim during a panel discussion with the Weekly Standard's Mary Katharine Ham 25 minutes into the 8 pm Eastern hour. O'Reilly asked the NPR analyst about a point made by Fox News's Brit Hume in an earlier segment, that there's double-standard in the mainstream media in the amount of coverage of extremist imagery and language found at tea party rallies has been given versus equivalent imagery and language used at left-wing protests (a point raised by the MRC's Rich Noyes in an August 2009 Media Reality Check): "There's no doubt that the media will seize upon any kind of misbehavior on the right...Whereas if it happens on the left, it will, as Mary Katharine [Ham] said, be de-emphasized or ignored entirely. So that's a corrupt media system, isn't it?"
The guest raised the militia issue at the end of his answer:
WILLIAMS: I think we're out of context here. If we're talking about- you know, somebody going after Ronald Reagan- you know, one guy who's in love with Jodie Foster, okay- if we're talking about that. You know, people who have a lot of hatred- hateful attitudes towards President Bush, and then somebody who is extremist on the fringe, yes. And if that was also to be then the case with the tea party, yes, that's too much and unfair. But, when you start to see militia groups start to associate with the tea party, when you see the flag-
(UPDATE: The Breitbart prize has been increased to $100,000.)
There is $10,000 just waiting to be picked up by Al Sharpton. That is the prize money that Andrew Breitbart has offered to anyone who can reveal a video of Tea Party protestors in Washington, D.C. on March 20 who supposedly screamed the N-word at Congressman John Lewis. This "incident" first came to light when David Kerly breathlessly reported on it for ABC's World News Tonight:
...In fact, Cleaver, Emanuel Cleaver was together with John Lewis – they were walking over to the Capitol when somebody spit on Congressman Cleaver and yelled the ‘N’ word at Congressman Lewis. Cleaver was taken to police headquarters. He did ID the man, but he is not going to press charges. He’s not speaking about it. Lewis is not going to speak about it...
Yes, Kerly reported the racial invective as an absolute fact. Only one small problem. Despite the fact that many cameras were recording this scene, not one video has yet been produced proving this despite the fact that Andrew Breitbart has now offered a $10,000 cash incentive to do so:
It’s time for the allegedly pristine character of Rep. John Lewis to put up or shut up. Therefore, I am offering $10,000 of my own money to provide hard evidence that the N- word was hurled at him not 15 times, as his colleague reported, but just once. Surely one of those two cameras wielded by members of his entourage will prove his point.
And delivering that response was "The O'Reilly Factor" host Bill O'Reilly, who called his show "the signature broadcast" of the network. O'Reilly dismissed Raines as a lunatic. However he was also critical of The Washington Post for giving him an outlet to trot out his ranting.
"[I] think there is a more important thing in play here," O'Reilly said. "The Washington Post has given this guy Raines a big platform on Sunday, this coming Sunday, to print this nonsense and it is nonsense. If Raines were sitting here I could carve him up and he, Raines knows it."
But O'Reilly questioned why the Post had decided to give Raines the space in its upcoming March 14 issue to rip on his network. According to O'Reilly, this was an effort to rally the media for a last stand.
On Tuesday’s The O’Reilly Factor on FNC, during the show’s regular "Pinheads and Patriots" segment, host Bill O’Reilly picked up on Dan Rather’s recent gaffe connecting "articulate" President Obama with "selling watermelons," as the FNC host gave on-screen attribution to NewsBusters as his source while a clip of Rather’s words from Sunday’s Chris Matthews Show played.
O’Reilly then observed the double standard between the likely media interest if a right-leaning personality like himself made such a statement which seems to employ racial stereotyping versus the lack of interest in such words being uttered by the left-leaning Rather.
Below is a transcript of the relevant portion of the Tuesday, March 9, The O’Reilly Factor on FNC: