Jun
01
2003

O’Reilly’s Racist Slurs–in Context

In April 2003, Fox News Channel‘s Bill O’Reilly hosted a fundraiser for Best Friends, a charity benefiting inner-city schoolchildren. As reported in the Washington Post (4/15/03), O’Reilly was trying to fill the time before a singing group connected with the charity, called the Best Men, was set to perform, and quipped: “Does anyone know where the Best Men are? I hope they’re not in the parking lot stealing our hubcaps.” According to the Post report, some of the conservatives in the audience were aghast at the seemingly racist crack. But if anyone was shocked by O’Reilly’s apparent racism, they haven’t […]

May
01
2003

O’Reilly’s War

Any rationale—or none—will do

We hope you depend on us for the truth, because we’re going to report the situation in Iraq without an agenda or any ideological prejudice. —Bill O’Reilly (O’Reilly Factor, 1/17/03) Not so long ago, Bill O’Reilly had no particular interest in the threat Iraq posed to the world (2/16/01): “You know, I don’t take Saddam Hussein all that seriously anymore as far as a world threat. Maybe I’m wrong and naive here. Should we be very frightened of this guy?” If the Bill O’Reilly of today were to meet the Bill O’Reilly of 2001, he’d denounce him as an appeaser, […]

Apr
01
2003

SoundBites

Extra! Update April 2003

The Disarmament Nightmare Subheads over a March 4 New York Times article: “More Missiles Destroyed; Washington Is Concerned Over Possible Complications for Effort to Disarm Iraq.” Nothing like disarming to complicate disarmament. NBC Nightly News (2/27/03) was even more alarmed about the missile destruction, with Andrea Mitchell reporting: “For the U.S., it’s a nightmare scenario. If Iraq destroys the missiles, it will be much harder to get support for military action.” Spinning Jesus “Both sides of the debate are saying God is on their side. Those who favor peace point to the Pope calling the war immoral, and those who […]

May
01
2002

The ‘Oh Really?’ Factor

Bill O'Reilly spins facts and statistics

Bill O'Reilly

If it’s “spin” to back up your arguments with bogus facts and statistics, and to dismiss numbers that don’t fit in with your preconceptions, then Bill O’Reilly‘s Fox News Channel show isn’t, as he repeatedly claims, a “no-spin zone”–it’s Spin City. During an interview with National Organization for Women president Kim Gandy (O’Reilly Factor, 2/5/02), O’Reilly claimed that “58 percent of single-mom homes are on welfare.” When Gandy questioned that figure, O’Reilly held firm: “You can’t say no, Miss Gandy. That’s the stat. You can’t just dismiss it…. It’s 58 percent. That’s what it is from the federal government.” But […]

Jul
01
2001

Bill O’Reilly’s Sheer O’Reillyness

Don't call him conservative-- but he is

Fox News Channel‘s star performer is undoubtedly Bill O’Reilly. Host of the nightly talk-show The O’Reilly Factor and author of the best-selling book of the same name, O’Reilly epitomizes Fox‘s in-your-face style. A former anchor for the tabloid Inside Edition whose upcoming contract is reportedly worth $20 million (Boston Globe, 3/14/01), O’Reilly poses nightly as an outraged common man speaking out against the corruption of the liberal elites who run the country from Hollywood and Washington. “We’re the only show from a working-class point of view,” he once told the Washington Post (12/13/00). “I understand working-class Americans. I’m as lower-middle-class […]