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Just Another Day Filled with Bombast, Bloviating, Bashing and Bile

Reported by Marie Therese - June 7, 2005

Last Thursday, June 2, 2005, O'Reilly Factor host, Bill O'Reilly, offered up his usual smorgasbord of vituperation and vilification. He continued his attack on Florida's Brad King, bad-mouthed the Vast Left Wing Conspiracy that has arisen to counter the influence of the much-older and more powerful Vast Right Wing Conspiracy, implicitly threatened modern-day whistleblowers during a discussion of Deep Throat, pooh-poohed the idea that the right has gone too far, discussed another missing white woman and and gleefully reduced Paul Krugman to the status of "ridiculous item."

[This post is being filed late because I feel there were important items in this show that should be on the record. After three days, the post will be back-dated to June 2nd. Alert: It is a long post, divided into 8 segments, each with a heading for easier perusing.]

Segment 1: Talking Points Memo: O'Reilly's Last Ditch Effort to Oust Florida State Attorney Brad King

O'Reilly started of his daily dose of right-wing commentary by once more smearing the good name of a hard-working Republican, Florida State Attorney Brad King. We here at News Hounds have been closely following O'Reilly's campaigns against various legal and judicial personages. Generally they are Democrats, but in this case he has taken on a Republican.

As we've reported elsewhere, O'Reilly has been desperately trying to drum up local support to force Florida Governor Jeb Bush to take Brad King off the Jessica Lunsford murder case, because King will not prosecute the three people who shared the same trailer as Jessica's accused murderer, John Couey.

Last night, however, Bill was all righteous indignation and moral outrage. But might it just be bravado? Has Bill lost his mojo? Are his days as a mover and shaker waning?

He admitted that all of his efforts have not born fruit in Brad King's own hometown. Governor Bush will not engage on the issue, either.

So now O'Reilly has decided to agitate for FEDERAL charges to be levied against Couey's three housemates.

O'REILLY: There's something desperately wrong here and every American should get involved. ... Maybe public pressure can fore the Florida authorities to right a grievous wrong. But Talking Points is not confident that will happen, so later we'll take a look at the federal option. Little Jessica was kidnapped before she was murdered, That's a federal offense. Nine year olds have civil rights, too. They're Americans, too. If Jessica's family had money and power, believe me, those three slugs would be in prison today. .....

Later in the show he interviewed two like-minded guests on this topic.

It remains to be seen whether or not anyone in Florida will follow O'Reilly's lead. As I've said before, his crusades don't seem to pack as much punch as they used to.

Segment 2: Deep Throat, the Vast left Wing Conspiracy and Hillary Clinton

Dick Morris said that Deep Throat was the first of a long line of whistleblowers: "I think this guy (Mark Felt) deserves the Congressional Medal of Honor."

O'Reilly then asked him if there was "any similarity in your mind to Linda Tripp." Yes, that's right, Linda Tripp. The GOp is now trying to equate Tripp who taped Monica Lewinsky's confidential revelations about a sexual affair with a President to a man who singlehandedly broke open a major assault on the Constitution by the President' and his men. Such an inane comparison is not worth taking time to dispute.

O'Reilly went on to say that the vast left wing conspiracy is "very well coordinated to create the impression that we - America - are the bad guys. We are the torturers, we're the gulag people." Morris agreed, saying: "It obviously works in with Al Qaeda and Al-Jazeera and all of those propaganda outlets." Both men went on to chastise Bush because he has not responded to any of the VLWC's charges. Neither man could say why, but affirmed that Bush is paying a price in the polls for his lack of a rebuttal.

MORRIS: When something like this happens a politician has a choice. He can be the prosecutor or the defendant. ..... the left is doing a brilliant job. It's capitalizing on the complacence of the Bush administration.

O'REILLY: ... I have to give the devil his due. This is dishonest. It's absolutely dishonest. It's brilliant. And they want to dismantle the Bush administration and then leave the door open for Hilliary to walk in in 2008."

MORRIS: Bush doesn't get it. This is not about politics. This is about winning the war because, in the last analysis, in any democracy a foreign war is a war for domestic public opinion. When domestic public opinion runs out, you lose the war.

Segment 3: Is FOX Issuing a Veiled Threat to Potential Whistleblowers?

The rats are coming out of the woodwork. Rather than let a man viewed by most Americans as a hero for his part in the Watergate scandal write a book and make a little money to leave his family, conservative "purist" Andrew Napolitano joined the small but vocal chorus of Nixon-lovers in sliming Mark Felt's reputation, preaching that society should never reward betrayal. Napolitano pontificated that, if Mark Felt ever accepts money from or is offered money by Bob Woodward or Carl Bernstein, it would constitute the second half of a bribe and therefore he could be prosecuted.

Napolitano's "legal" opinion is beneath contempt! Even O'Reilly argued that Felt had good reasons for doing what he did but Napolitano would have none of it, claiming that Felt was duty-bound to go to his superiors and report his suspicions. For those of you who remember, the Attorney General at the time was John Mitchell, who was up to his armpits in the entire Watergate cover-up. Felt's immediate superior was a Casper Milquetoast named L. Pat Gray who lacked a spine.

Napolitano made sure to let everyone know that Felt was convicted of civil rights violations "for which he was convicted when he supervised FBI agents breaking into the homes of [indecipherable]. He said on the witness stand that he believed that, in an emergency situation, the FBI could suspend the Constitution, forget about search warrants, forget about the Fourth Amendment and allow people to brea - allow FBI agents to break into homes if the homes being broken into belonged to radicals or bad guys."

O'Reilly noted that Ronald Reagan pardoned Felt for these "black bag jobs."

O'REILLY: They were breakin' into radicals in the 60s homes and all this.

NAPOLITANO: Same crime that the Watergate burglars were accused of.

[COMMENT: Napolitano reveals his prejudices here. In his excitement to make his point he inadvertently admits that he believes that in 1972 the Democratic National Committee was a de facto "radical organization" and therefore a legitimate target for an FBI "black bag" job. In other words he equates the DNC with the mafia, SDS, SLA, Weather Underground, etc.]

Later:

NAPOLITANO: He better be careful where he gets the money. If he writes a book, God bless him! He's got a right to write the book and I'll read it, you'll read it, a lot of people [will?] want to read it.

O'REILLY: I won't read it. I won't read it.

NAPOLITANO: Well, It's an interesting story. If he accepts money from Woodward and Bernstein today, as his daughter asked Woodward and Bernstein publicly to do, that's the second half of a bribe.

O'REILLY: Really?!

NAPOLITANO: First half is: Do something inconsistent with your oath as an officer of the government, which he did.

O'REILLY: Which was what?

NAPOLITANO: Passing secrets to a newspaper reporter.

O'REILLY: How did that violate the oath?

NAPOLITANO: The oath is to keep secret information obtained in a criminal prosecution until there's an indictment and it has to come out in the courtroom. He took an oath to do that, so it's malfeasance in office.

O'REILLY: Right.

NAPOLITANO: It's passing secrets without authorization to do so,though we know he believes he's above the law. If he did it for profit, it's bribery. So here's the theory. Bribery requires malfeasance in office, corrupting your office in return for a benefit. He corrupted his office in 1973 when, instead of giving information to the prosecutors, he gave it to the press. If he accepts money now, that's the second half of the bribe. The statute of limitations, which is five years, will start running anew ...

O'REILLY: Now.

NAPOLITANO: ... if Woodward and Bernstein ...

O'REILLY (smiles): So you can be bribes [sic] for something thirty years later?

NAPOLITANO: Absolutely ...

O'REILLY: That's very interesting.

NAPOLITANO: ... if the second half of the bribe is committed now.

O'REILLY: No prosecutor would have the cujones to do that.

NAPOLITANO: Because he's 91 years old ...

O'REILLY: Right.

NAPOLITANO: ... he's not all there and, even though I abhor what he did ...

O'REILLY: Do you really?

NAPOLITAO: ...he is a mythical figure now in American history.

O'REILLY: Alright. now. [Dick] Morris thinks he's a hero and you abhor what he did.

NAPOLITANO: Sure. He set a pattern that I hope no FBI agent follows, which is, instead of passing information about the bad guys, whether they're CIA agents, other FBI agents, the Attorney General or the President on to your superiors, you pass it on to the press.

O'REILLY: Alright, but your top superior is a crook- Mitchell - who's indicted, alright ... so he's a crook.

NAPOLITANO: Right.

O'REILLY: L. Patrick Gray, your immediate superior, is appointed by Nixon, who's the guy you're investigating. So, as we said last night, you know what happens to FBI agents who go against the prevailing wisdom. They're in Fargo and they're destroyed.

NAPOLITANO: OK.

O'REILLY: This guy knew that would happen.

NAPOLITANO: OK. OK, but he had a Special Prosecutor that he could have gone to. By delaying, impeding or preventing information from going to the Special Prosecutor he breaks the law.

O'REILLY (overtalks last 10 words): Let me ask you this question. If he had gone to the Special Prosecutor at the time ....

NAPOLITANO: Instead of to Woodward.

O''REILLY: .... who was Sirica, right?

NAPOLITANO: No, Sirica was the judge.

O'REILLY: The judge.

NAPOLITANO: No, the Special Prosecutor, initially, was Cox, was Archibald Cox ...

O'REILLY: Right.

NAPOLITANO: ... ultimately, Leon Jaworski. Felt served on both of their terms.

O'REILLY: So, say he had gone around L. Patrick Gray and John Mitchell.

NAPOLITANO: That would have been an act of a hero

O'REILLY: So - but, he would have been fired, he would have been vilified, he would have been torn to pieces, his family would have been attacked, right?

NAPOLITANO: But it wouldn't have broken the law. Instead, he breaks the law by taking that information and giving it to the press.

O'REILLY: That's a lot to think about. You're gonna be destroyed. You're gonna lose your job. Your family's gonna be torn apart. That's a lot to think about.

NAPOLITANO: How much does he believe in what he was doing?

O'REILLY: Not much because he's a black bag guy. He did exactly what - look, I think the guy's a hypocrite. I don't think he's a hero.

NAPOLITANO: You know ...

O'REILLY: But I understand why he did what he did.

NAPOLITANO: You know he was very bitter that Nixon didn't make him the head of the FBI.

O'REILLY: I know. We pointed all that out.

NAPOLITANO: And yet he called Nixon as his chief witness in the criminal case! And former President Nixon told the jury that the FBI is allowed to go around the Constitution and the jury rejected it!

O'REILLY: Right. Alright. So. He's not gonna be charged. We know that but he could be, if he takes money.

NAPOLITANO: Absolutely.

[COMMENT: Was this interview actually just about Mark Felt or were O'Reilly and Napolitano sending a message to would-be whistleblowers? If someone in the current government was considering going to the press and reporting malfeasance by the Bush administration, he or she might think twice if they thought that they could be prosecuted up to thirty years later.]

Follow-Up Segment 4: O'Reilly Goes Over the Top in His Desperation to Influence Florida State Law Enforcement

O'Reilly has gotten nowhere influencing Florida's state law enforcement vis a vis the arrest and detention of the three low-lifes that lived with self-admitted molester and killer John Couey so he's decided it's time for him to bring in the feds. O'Reilly and his guest, Myles Malman, former Chief Assistant U. S. Attorney in Florida , discussed various legal maneuvers aimed at bypassing Florida State State Attorney Brad King in the Jessica Lunsford murder case.

O'REILLY: What I want to do here is get the federal authorities in to arrest these people, who we believe, aided and abetted Couey and the quicker we can get them in - and then they could say, you know, interrogates [sic] these people and one of 'em would flip against the other, 'cause nobody believes that they were in the trailer and didn't know this little girl was in there. Nobody believes that ... I'm trying to find a way that the authorities, the feds, could go in there and take the case and charge these three.

MALMAN: The most efficient way and quickest way for the feds to come in would be to come in and charge people with the UF Act, with the Unlawful Flight or a conspiracy to commit unlawful flight, open up a federal grand jury investigation, start interviewing people, start dragging people before a grand jury, start grillin' 'em and things could be done if the feds want to do it.

Malman then told O'Reilly the person to contact would be U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Florida, Paul Perez. Malman claimed: "I'm sure that no one has brought this to his attention." O'Reilly said they would call Perez and try to get him on the show Friday night, June 3rd.

O'Reilly went on to make the compare Brad King's inaction to what "happened in the South in the 40s and 50s when blacks were being persecuted, crimes were being committed against African-Americans and the local cops wouldn't investigate. That's why they passed all these bias crimes [sic]. And this little girl - this little girl was brutalized. These three people were, you know, there - and everybody's lettin''em go...."

[COMMENT: Brad King seems to be an excellent prosecutor who has a good track record in Florida. He has said that if there was any way to charge these three people, he would have done so. Clearly, King, a Republican, values the law more he does the overheated rhetoric of an opinionated TV commentator!

Segment 5: Michael Jackson

Ho hum.

Segment 6: Laura Ingraham Dismisses Idea that the Right Gone Too Far

Bill's guest was syndicated talk show host and author Laura Ingraham, hired to rebut a column by Mort Zuckerman in the 6/2/05 New York Daily News entitled "Going Right May Be Wrong: Religious conservatives may push GOP out of the mainstream, opening the door to a Democratic revival. I suggest that you read the article before continuing, as it will frame the discussion better for you.

Ingraham started off by revealing exactly who she considers to be "regular people: "I think it's interesting that people like Zuckerman would be saying this now coming off an election where President Bush was elected with middle class support, Bill, from about $23,000 to about $50,000 bracket for anual salary. Bush won by 6 points in all Americans and 22 points in white middle class voters, so the Republicans are clearly connecting with the regular people where Democrats aren't."

You can watch an online video and/or read the FOX transcript of this interview by clicking here.

If Mort Zuckerman is right, the real question is not whether there is a crack in the Republicans armor but whether or not the Democrats have what it takes to seize and maintain the advantage they are being offered on a silver platter.

Segment 7: Another Missing White Woman

O'Reilly Interviewed Mark Klaas about the disappearance of Natalee Holloway in Aruba.

Segment 8: The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day

O'REILLY: There's a nasty little brawl taking place within The New York Times. It seems that paper's outgoing ombudsman, Daniel Okrent, has accused Paul Krugman, a columnist, of distorting information to back up his far-left point of view.

Now, you may remember I said the same thing to Krugman's face in the debate I had with him on CNBC. So this is kind of ironic.

If you want details, you can go to The New York Times Web site. There's really nothing new here, other than The New York Times finally wising up.

By the way, that newspaper's laying off 200 people. I have a segment with Neil Cavuto on that tomorrow evening, and Cavuto, as you know, is never ridiculous.

EXCERPT FROM DANIEL OKRENT'S NY TIMES COLUMN

"Op-Ed columnist Paul Krugman has the disturbing habit of shaping, slicing and selectively citing numbers in a fashion that pleases his acolytes but leaves him open to substantive assaults. Maureen Dowd was still writing that Alberto R. Gonzales "called the Geneva Conventions 'quaint' " nearly two months after a correction in the news pages noted that Gonzales had specifically applied the term to Geneva provisions about commissary privileges, athletic uniforms and scientific instruments. Before his retirement in January, William Safire vexed me with his chronic assertion of clear links between Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein, based on evidence only he seemed to possess.

"No one deserves the personal vituperation that regularly comes Dowd's way, and some of Krugman's enemies are every bit as ideological (and consequently unfair) as he is. But that doesn't mean that their boss, publisher Arthur O. Sulzberger Jr., shouldn't hold his columnists to higher standards.

"I didn't give Krugman, Dowd or Safire the chance to respond before writing the last two paragraphs. I decided to impersonate an opinion columnist."

You can read Krugman's response and Okrent's rebuttal - complete with dueling links - by going to The New York Times Public Editor's Web Journal.

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