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O'Reilly “Reveals” GE and NBC's Agenda: To Slime Republicans on President Obama's Behalf

Reported by Ellen - June 21, 2009 -

Guest blogged by Julie

On Bill O'Reilly's “Reality Check” Thursday night (6/18/09), O'Reilly came out against, who else, NBC, in defense of Sarah Palin, who we know not only feels terribly insulted by David Letterman – a comedian, who makes a living making fun of, you know, people – but was also supposedly “slimed” by O'Reilly's nemesis, NBC. Hmmm – I seem to recall two prominent Eminem raps, one called “Chemical Warfare” describing graphic sexual acts with Sarah Palin, and the other (the one that had O'Reilly frothing at the mouth), a music video, “We Made You,” in which Eminem talked about “nailing” Palin and featured a Palin look-alike in sex scenes (see my post here). Okay, sure, Letterman is on CBS and Eminem's not. And Letterman mentioned Palin's daughter, and Eminem didn't – well, not yet. But on the other hand, “We Made You” was featured on BET, MTV – cable networks, which I imagine they get even in Alaska. I guess I missed Palin's outrage at being portrayed as a sexed-up trollop in Eminem's raps. Can we say this Letterman outrage is a little, well, contrived, a little of that familiar Palin-making-political-hay about anything that will get her mug back out there? And is O'Reilly's outrage on her behalf nothing but a golden opportunity to attack GE and NBC? With video.

O'Reilly went on to say, “As you may know, the General Electric Corporation owns NBC News, and there is compelling evidence that NBC is giving President Obama favorable treatment so that GE will be awarded billions, billions, in government contracts.” Gosh, I can't imagine why President Obama has any reason to think Fox is “entirely devoted to attacking” his Administration. After all, what U.S. President wouldn't appreciate being accused of pay-to-play politics?

“Two weeks ago, a fawning special on President Obama anchored by Brian Williams brought criticism from many quarters, some charging the softball is part of GE's plan to put the President in a positive light in return for federal dollars – big federal dollars.” There you go again, O'Reilly, accusing the President of pay-to-play. And that “criticism from many quarters” – who are you talking about, Megan McCain on Twitter? Or maybe infidelsarecool.com, a right-wing website?

“And now there are charges that GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt and NBC boss Jeff Zucker have expanded the strategy to include sliming Republicans. That is, using NBC News not only to promote Obama, but demean the opposing party. Recently an NBC News anchor – not a commentator, an anchor, Contessa Brewer – demonstrated this in a discussion about Sarah Palin.” I am so very weary of being O'Reilly's “fair and balanced” police – please, please tell me, O'Reilly, you're not citing the reader forums at Hannity.com as the source of these “charges."

So, now that I've digressed enough, here's a transcript of the “sliming” clip.

Brewer: “Why did she take such offense – she called him pathetic, so she obviously took offense. Why was she so offended by David Letterman”

Ziegler: “Well, Contessa, since you're a female, you might be a better expert on wherther or not it's appropriate to call public figures “slutty” for no apparent reason and to joke about her daughter being knocked up in the middle of Yankee Stadium . . . how would you feel about that?”

Brewer: “That's actually happened to me, and I'm fine, I'm still here . . . .”

Ziegler: “Really, David Letterman joked about you being slutty and about your daughter being knocked up?”

Brewer: “Not David Letterman, but it happened to me publicly.”

“Obviously Ms. Brewer has little sympathy for Governor Palin,” O'Reilly intoned gravely.

But wait, hold up. Did O'Reilly forget to mention who Brewer was interviewing – which was none other than Palin's Forever Stalwart Champion, John Ziegler, who came charging out of the gate and immediately began attacking MSNBC? And since O'Reilly, once again, needs some help with the whole “fair and balanced” thing (sigh), I'd like to mention that Brewer, from the beginning, was eminently reasonable, even offering Ziegler a forum to discuss Keith Olbermann. In the lead-up to the interview – which ol' “fair and balanced” O'Reilly omitted – Brewer said, “ . . . and in this case it sounds like . . . Letterman missed the funny bone and struck a nerve instead.” Doesn't sound like “sliming” to me.

And there's another segment of the clip “fair and balanced” O'Reilly forgot to play. When Brewer introduced Ziegler, she said, “John, good to see you,” to which he replied, “ . . . always interesting to go at it with the people with Barack Obama's official network.” Now, that's sliming.

As Crooks and Liars noted, Ziegler was a “braying jackass” from jump in this interview. They've got the whole exchange which ended with Brewer cutting Ziegler's mic.

Where's all the “sliming” and “demeaning” O'Reilly talked about? Where's the “compelling evidence” that our President is making back-room deals with GE and NBC? Where are the sources on the Factor verifying the charges that GE has a “strategy” to play super nice with the President in exchange for the big bucks in government contracts?

The same dungeon, I think, where Fox News keeps “Fair and Balanced” chained up.