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O'Reilly: There isn't going to be any accountability for Bush, except in historical realm

Reported by Chrish - August 22, 2007 -

Bill O'Reilly started his segment with Bill Maher yesterday 8/21/07 by sticking his foot firmly in his own mouth. Asking Maher if he was going to stack his "Real Time" panels with "left-wing loons" again this season, he said about last year's line-up "how many times can Arianna Huffington come on the program?" Maher replied that Huffington wasn't on the show last year. Oops. O'Reilly's prejudice continued to be evident through the segment.

(Maher's guests this Friday will be Tim Robbins and Stephen (F.) Hayes, who wrote the book on Cheney. Funny that a comedian's talk show is more fair and balanced than the self-proclaimed news network.)

The interview was limited by O'Reilly to two questions: how will Maher react to the forthcoming report from General Petraeus that will say the surge is working? (Apparently regardless of whatever happens in the interim 2 weeks) and, who does Maher support for president in '08?

Maher said essentially that even if security in Iraqi neighborhoods is improved, the short-term goal of the surge, the Sunnis have walked out of the government and in the broader sense, it can't work. Current troop levels can't be maintained past April (without a draft - ch) and "we will never outlast insurgents in their own homeland." Maher thinks the so-called Biden Plan which would partition Iraq into three seperate states is the best workable plan to get us out of there. When O'Reilly said that we'd need to keep troops there to faciltate the transition, Maher replied that won't fly with Americans, and we have to acknowledge that "it didn't work."

O'Reilly said that none of the Democratic (presidential) candidates, with the exception of Dennis Kucinich, are saying that they're going to immediately withdraw. (Comment: Bill Richardson on Meet the Press, said "Right now I believe we must withdraw all our troops by the end of this calendar year with no residual forces because our troops today are a target. " He reiterated that stance just last Sunday in yet another debate.)

O'Reilly reverted to the old meme of "cut and run," even though he himself called for a "tactical withdrawal" at the end of 2006 "because war is a performance business." Maher countered that Iraq was not a sanctuary until we went in and deposed Saddam Hussein, and O'Reilly chastised him for looking backward and not forward. Maher pointed out that with the Bush administration, there's never a good time to criticize them: in the present we're warned to be supportive of whatever crisis of their making we're criticizing, and after the fact we're scolded for not being forward-thinking. O'Reilly responded that

"There's not going to be any accountability for this president, except in the historical realm - history will judge him."

The Bills made a dirty joke that didn't get edited out, O'Reilly made a patronizing comment about consequences, and moved to the second question: who does Maher support for President?

Maher said he doesn't support anyone, as he likes to have them on his show and tries to remain neutral as he's somewhat in the media game himself. However, he will offer his opinion that the one sure winner for Democrats is John Edwards. Clinton is dicey, although her popularity seems to be growing, and Obama would get the youth vote (except that youth don't vote), but Edwards in a general campaign is a winner.

Of course O'Reilly, who has publicly stated his disdain (fear) of John Edwards numerous times, disagreed and used the opportunity to slam Edwards a bit more. O'Reilly said Edwards' campaign is disorganized, he doesn't know what he's saying day to day, he's very left wing, and he's wouldn't come close to winning any election. (Actually, Edwards polls well in one-to-one match-ups and in some polls does better than Clinton and Obama. He is right in there with the front-runners. FOX is terrified of an Edwards candidacy because they've got nothing on him but earning and spending money.)

Maher put O'Reilly straight about Edwards, denying that he's left-wing and elucidating that Edwards wants to cut corporate/ag/rich people welfare and put the money to work for ordinary Americans.

Asked if he liked any Republicans, Maher replied that he did as a comedian but wouldn't be voting Republican, though he'd like to see the "cross dresser and the Mormon" run together. O'Reilly scrambled to obfuscate the cross-dressing remark but Maher was clear that there were five different instances documented. O'Reilly, who routinely hollers that two wrongs don't make a right and moral relativism and blahblahblah, announced that Maher frequents the Playboy Mansion. Ah, but he goes as a MAN! Maher got the last word.