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O'Reilly's double standards exposed again

Reported by Chrish - October 9, 2007 -

Tonight 10/08/07 on the O'Reilly Factor Bill O'Reilly held his weekly segment with his body-language expert, a sneaky vehicle for "scientifically" or "objectively" criticizing and ascribing motivations to people with whom he disagrees. Tonight one of the subjects of this disengenuous tactic was Barack Obama, in an interview explaining why he doesn't wear a flag pin in his lapel. O'Reilly introduced it: "Barack Obama made a controversial comment about not wearing a flag lapel pin anymore. Roll the tape."

Obama was seen saying (in a clip from an interview with ABC-affiliate KCRG-TV 10/3 in Cedar Rapids):

"I decided I won't wear that pin on my chest. Instead, I'm going to try to tell the American people what I believe will make this country great and, hopefully, that will be a testimony to my patriotism."

Missing from the clip was the antecedent "[R]ight after 9-11, I had a pin... Shortly after 9-11, particularly because as we're talking about the Iraq war, that became a substitute for, I think, true patriotism, which is speaking out on issues that are of importance to our national security."

Concerned that he would be taken out of context or accused of being unpatriotic, Obama clarified the following day, 10/04/07 at a campaign event:

"Somebody noticed I wasn't wearing a flag lapel pin and I told folks, well you know what? I haven't probably worn that pin in a very long time. I wore it right after 9/11. But after a while, you start noticing people wearing a lapel pin, but not acting very patriotic. Not voting to provide veterans with resources that they need. Not voting to make sure that disability payments were coming out on time.

My attitude is that I'm less concerned about what you're wearing on your lapel than what's in your heart. And you show your patriotism by how you treat your fellow Americans, especially those who served. You show your patriotism by being true to our values and our ideals and that's what we have to lead with is our values and our ideals."

Not to credit the body-language segment too much, Reiman (the guest) said Obama, in the original clip, took a second either to collect his thoughts or didn't want to answer the question, to which O'Reilly responded that he (Obama) "brought this whole thing upon himself; he made a big deal out of the flag and the lapel pin." He thought that was interesting: "even if you make a big deal, you don't want to talk about it." Reiman said he was still "uncomfortable; a lot of times these things are made..." Bill cut her off to ask if Obama looked uncomfortable to her? No, the deep inhalation told her he either didn't want to answer or was slightly uncomfortable answering it. (This all infers a defensiveness on Obama's part, which in turn infers guilt, as if he's been caught doing something wrong.)

I submit option 3: he was exasperated that he is running for president of the United States and he has some goober with a microphone asking him about his jewelry.

But that's not the point of this post.

Obama stopped wearing the flag lapel pin years ago - it is not something he just recently adapted to pander to liberals who oppose the Iraq war, as was suggested on FOX and Friends October 5th. When Obama made the clarification October 4th it was reported by the AP and rapidly picked up by Internet gossip Matt Drudge. From there it grew wings and was picked up by mainstream media outlets ABC News, FOX News, and CNN, where it was not clear at all that this was not a recent move, nor was his reasoning properly presented.

Once again, thank goodness for Media Matters, which has timelined the whole faux scandal.

But that's not the point either.

The point is, Bill O'Reilly stomped around on his high horse for a week because CNN and other outlets (which he (black)listed verbally and graphically on his show and on his website) used information from Media Matters - quotes, transcripts, and audio files of his radio show - and aired it. He slandered Media Matters and smeared CNN and FOX News started a campaign against the excellent Christiane Amanpour and her "God's Warriors" series. He personally attacked David Brock, president of Media Matters, in a vicious and unprofessional manner. And he ranted about the corrupt media that would use such a" farleft smear site" as a source, thereby legitimizing them and giving them a platform. He concluded

"This country is under siege by ideologues who use fascist tactics and a corrupt mainstream media to spread their defamation."

Five days later he was discussing a faux smear story on a presidential candidate, blaming the candidate for bringing it up (which he didn't), and giving more legitimacy to a story first circulated by a right-wing Internet gossip, to create controversey and offer an opportunity for "conservatives" to question Obama's patriotism. I agreed with him before and I'll do it again:

"This country is under siege by ideologues (Drudge, FOX News) who use fascist tactics (flag worship) and a corrupt mainstream media (FOX News, who's keeping the "story" alive) to spread their defamation."

The hypocrisy never stops.