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Clueless O'Reilly Mutilates the Meaning of Bruce Springsteen's Comment

Reported by Ellen - May 6, 2009 -

Guest blogged by Julie

Caution . . . you are about to enter the Dumb As Dirt Zone.

On Tuesday, May 5th, on The O'Reilly Factor, O'Reilly trumpeted, “How the Republican Party can make a comeback – that is the subject of this evening's Talking Points Memo.” Okay, that's not the dumb part. Keep reading.


“Right now the Democratic Party holds almost all the cards, as you know,” he began. “If President Obama is successful turning the economy around the Dems may even become more dominant in the years to come. That scenario's not really healthy for the USA as a vibrant two-party system is needed in order to solve complex problems and preventing arrogance and corruption of entrenched idealogy.” Damn, Bill, I didn't listen to every segment for the past eight years, but a Google search doesn't turn up any evidence that you ever felt it was, what did you say, “not really healthy” when Republicans controlled everything during the Bush Administration. Funny, too, that you should find all these ill winds blowing now that the Democrats are almost completely in control. So, okay, that's pretty dumb, but not the worst, yet. Read on.

“The problem is the Republican Party is in disarray. The Democrats have succeeded as defining the GOP as the Party of No.” One could argue that the Republicans defined THEMSELVES as the Party of No when they, well, said, "No, No, No," to absolutely everything. What would you have the Dems define them as, the party of "I'm Saying No But I Really Mean Yes?" But, moving on. “That is a simple but powerful message. If Republicans oppose gay marriage, for example, they must articulate a strong and logical reason why they oppose to successfully shoot down the 'bigot' label that the far left heaps upon them.” Flat out dumb to think they can unring that bell, but it gets worse.

“You can't just oppose, you have to engage. Republicans are also missing the one huge opportunity the Democrats are giving them. The loudest voices for the Dems are now far left zealots who believe America is a flawed nation.” Here we go, descending into the Dumb as Dirt Zone.

O'Reilly continued, “Here's a good example. The other day a birthday party concert was held for left-wing singer Pete Seeger who's 90 years old. Bruce Springsteen performed at the concert, and then Bruce popped off as he often does.” O'Reilly played a video clip of Springsteen saying of Seeger: “At 90 he remains a stealth dagger through the heart of our country's illusions about itself. He sings all the verses, all the time. Especially the ones that we'd like to leave out of our history as a people.”

O'Reilly was livid. “That's right, Bruce, we all have false illusions that America's a noble nation . . . a country provides so much opportunity to the poor that more than 20 million people have illegally entered the USA.” (Yeah, take a swipe at undocumented immigrants, right on.) “You get that, Bruce? Why don't you take a look at your mansion, nice car, expensive comforts, and get a little perspective. You're a working class guy, right Bruce? Capitalism combined with your talent has made you a wealthy guy . . . now Bruce Springsteen's not exactly a PhD in political science, obviously. But his snide reference to America defines how the far left sees this country. And you know what, most liberal and conservative Americans disagree with him.”

Well, gotta hand it to you, O'Reilly, you sure caught Springsteen flat-footed on that one. How's he gonna explain that totally radical, un-American . . . oh, wait, he doesn't have to explain anything because he wasn't friggin' being anti-American – in fact, it was the opposite. Surely, Bill, growing up in the era of Pete Seeger (well, almost), you should know about Seeger's early years – how he went to Harvard, became a social activist, was a tireless worker for the Civil Rights Movement and better working conditions for working people . . . that he palled around with (bet you thought I was gonna say “terrorist”) songwriter Woody Guthrie, who wrote the song “This Land Is Your Land.” So, Bill, if you know enough about Seeger to call him “left-wing,” why is it that you and all those sterling Fox News producers did not know – or chose not to mention – the rest of Seeger's history, that Seeger and Woody Guthrie formed the Almanac Singers . . and in the era of the anti-Communist “witch hunts,” they were blacklisted by Joe McCarty . . . that Seeger testified before the House Un-American Activities Committee and refused to testify against his musician friends . . . and that he was lucky he wasn't sent to prison. And the song, “This Land Is Your Land”? The lyrics as we know them today were censored, Bill, to remove the “political” aspect – and so when Springsteen said, “he sings all the verses, all the time . . . especially the ones that we'd like to leave out of our history as a people,” he was referring to all of that Seeger history that you omitted. The song – as it was actually written – is not only a celebration of this great “land”, but was a demand for workers' and people's rights – real Americans. You can – and should, Bill – view the full lyrics here.

“Get solutions to problems. Explain your . . . positions clearly and without spite – and most importantly, stick up for America. Because the Democrats are certainly not doing that. Use that strategy, GOP, and you'll get back in the game.”

The Democrats you just directly and indirectly slammed, O'Reilly, invented the concept of sticking up for America – and, more importantly, the people who live in it. You, O'Reilly, just drove a “stealth dagger” through the heart of Fair and Balanced.

If you can't view the video below, here's a link.