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O'Reilly repetitious rhetoric, reprimands and rebukes

Reported by Chrish - June 11, 2008 -

Tonight's Talking Points Memo 6/10/08 was pretty much a repeat of last night's: Congress must act to reduce pain at the pump, Iran has figured out they can bring the US to our knees economically rather than militarily, and war between Iran and Israel is almost inevitable. A few deviations included slaps at GE and the NYTimes. Some TP dissection follows.

O'Reilly ever so briefly and uninformatively mentioned the NYTimes:

"Today the New York Times editorialized that any military action against Iran would be a "disaster." And that is true. Millions in the Muslim world would rush to Iran's defense, and Islamic-driven violence across the world would skyrocket, with terrorists like Hezbollah leading the way. The Times wants to bribe Iran to stop their nuke program. I believe that would not work. It's clear that the hateful mullahs believe they can hurt America and the West by creating havoc with oil."
He continued to bemoan that the world will not unite against Iran, including (slap #2) two American companies, Goodyear and GE, who continue to do business with Iran.

Goodyear, he said, sells about $300,000 of tractor tires per year to Iran, but

"by far the worst American company in this arena is General Electric, as we've mentioned. (And mentioned, and mentioned.) This man, GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt, does about fifty million dollars worth of business with Iran each year, even though Immelt knows Iran is killing US soldiers and Marines in Iraq, and wants to wipe Israel off the map. Immelt is helping a vicious enemy and there's no excuse for his disgraceful anti-American behavior."

He proceeded to note GE's slipping stock value and wondered how Immelt keeps his job.

When is someone going to sue this guy for defamation with intent to harm?

As everyone knows by now and as Howard Kurtz has reported, 1.) these attacks on GE, NBC, and Immelt are ordered from O'Reilly's boss to settle a score with he-who-shall-not-be-named (Keith Olbermann), and 2.) GE stopped accepting new contracts with iran in 2005, allowing existing contracts (worth less than $50 million) to run their course.

So the $50 million a year assertion is intentional exaggeration, and the implication that GE is doing business with Iran on a continuing basis is incorrect. In fact, Forbes.com reported back in 2005 that GE quit doing new business with Iran at just about the same time as, oh, what's their name? Halliburton. No mention of that company's dealings, which are continuing, albeit out of their new Dubai subsidiary. Read here for the convoluted trail that appears to tie Vice-president Dick Cheney to profiteering from sales of nuclear technology to the very people he wants to attack for developing nuclear technology; listen and watch here to the Congressional hearings investigating the dealings.

The "bribe" the NYTimes allegedly wants to offer Iran is nothing more than support for diplomacy and incentives as opposed to sanctions and saber-rattling, carrots rather than sticks:

Javier Solana, the European Union’s foreign policy chief, is scheduled to visit Tehran later this month to discuss, in more detail, an incentives package first offered in 2006 by the United States and other major powers. It is likely to fall far short — both in incentives and punishments — of what is needed to get Tehran’s attention.

There is no indication it will contain tougher sanctions — including a broader ban on doing business with Iranian banks and bans on arms sales and new investments. It also needs a stronger commitment from Washington to lift sanctions and to fully engage Iran if it abandons its nuclear efforts. The United States is the only major power not sending a diplomat with Mr. Solana.

So, more misinformation, exclusion of unfavorable-to-Bush-administration little details, and swipes at "enemies." Either Bill O'Reilly is really ignorant, or counts on his viewers being so. This is transparent propaganda.