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Bill O’Reilly Isn’t A Lawyer But He Plays One On TV!

Reported by Priscilla - February 18, 2010 -

When Bill O’Reilly isn’t fantasizing about Caribbean shower scenes involving falafel, he conjures up visions of himself as an arbiter of all things relating to morality and the law. He isn’t a lawyer; but he does fancy himself an expert on all things legal – to the extent that he publicly harangues those judges and state legislators who don’t agree with the court of Bill O’Reilly’s expert opinion. But he is “looking out for us” and his judicial fiat is the final word regardless of the actual law. This was quite apparent in last night’s “Factor” during which Bill refused to listen to the actual facts. And that the facts came from a woman, with far more legal expertise than Bill O’Reilly possesses, was a source of patriarchal annoyance to America’s Daddy who, in trying to “school her,” treated her like a naughty child. It was vintage O’Reilly without the “shut-up” – but plenty of pompous bombast and scolding. And in the guise of a discussion about an Iowa court case, which ruled that a 17 year old could perform at a nude dancing club, Bill provided a video peep into some stripping. Ah, good times!

During his latest “Is it legal?” segment, Bill was outraged about a recent court decision in Iowa involving the right of a 17 old to perform at a strip club. His graphic was a map of Iowa with the words “stripping as art.” He reported that the court made the decision because “quote stripping is an art form unquote.” As the text of the judge’s decision doesn’t seem to available, Bill’s “quote” seems to be in synch with the “reporting” coming out of right wing blogs such as “The American Spectator,” which began its article (without quotes) with this comment: “Nude dancing is still an art form…” which makes for a cute lead in, but doesn’t really tell the whole story. Mainstream reporting (DesMoines Register) describes the court case thusly: “Iowa law makes it a criminal offense to allow minors to perform a live act intended to arouse patrons. But Fremont County Judge Timothy O'Grady ruled that the strip club was protected because the law doesn't apply to theaters, art centers, or other venues devoted to the arts or theatrical performances. O'Grady said prosecutors failed to prove the club wasn't a theater.” So the key words here are prosecutors and theater – not “art form.” You didn’t get any of that from Bill but attorney Lis Wiehl explained it to him. While they continued to discuss the case, Bill played a video of strippers. Bill insisted that “the judges say it’s an art form.” Wiehl reiterated the Iowa law. Bill wanted to know if she “subscribed to the idea that it’s an art form.” Increasingly frustrated, she said that she read the “law and that’s what the law says.” Attorney Kimberly Guilfoyle said that Wiehl was reading the law correctly; but she didn’t see it as an art form and the court didn’t make the right call and is “hanging their hat on a technicality.” She asserted that the law has an obligation to “protect minors.” More “file” (from Bill’s personal collection?) of stripping was shown. Bill asserted that this isn’t an art form; but the judges say it is. America’s Daddy and Chief Morals Judge, Bill O’Reilly declared that the “judges are wrong.” He went further into lala land when he said that if stripping is an art form “we are all Picasso’s when we take a shower.” (ROFLMAO – Bill does seem to have a thing for showers!!!) He claimed that the judges are using the “art form ruse.” When Wiehl said,” but,” Bill, in his most patronizing manner, said “no but stay with the art form." Props to Wiehl for her response that Bill doesn’t like “activist” judges and this judge was “just following the law.” Bill's cranium is enlarged; but it’s also thick because he refused to hear what she was saying. Daddy Bill “gave” Wiehl “one more chance” (one wonders if she was thinking “if it weren’t for the money…”). He, again, misrepresented the decision: "They ruled that it was an art form” (No, Bill, the judge ruled that the prosecutors failed to say the club wasn’t a theater.) Wiehl responded “theater exceptions under the Iowa Law.” Still not getting it, he claimed that “if they ruled it wasn’t an art, it wouldn’t be allowed to take place.” Doing his best scolding daddy routine, he condescendingly said “that is what you fail to see.” He continued that the ruling hinged on whether a child was “committing art…that’s insane Wiehl and if you don’t get it I can’t help it." She said that the law should be changed. O’Reilly’s control issues, especially involving smart women, were evident: “I want to change the law; but I also want you to acknowledge that it’s not an art form.” She started to say “under the Iowa statute it is…” and Bill interrupted her with “enough, enough” and moved on to the next topic.

Comment: Lis Wiehl has a law degree from Harvard and is an adjunct professor of law at NY Law School. Bill O’Reilly is a right wing bloviator with pretensions towards being a “fair and balanced” “journalist.” This isn’t the first time he refused to listen to her. In 2007, he cut her mic and called her argument a lie because he didn’t agree with her. I’m surprised that he didn’t cut her mic during this interview as he was clearly not happy with her (correct) interpretation of the court’s decision which I don’t believe he was privy to other that what has been reported. His disagreement with the court’s decision was, as articulated by Wiehl, based on nothing more than emotion and not on the actual law. And because he is, I believe, a total misogynist, he was very annoyed that she wouldn’t agree with him and got the last word. Bill thinks he’s a lawyer – but he clearly isn’t! He’s a partisan talking (huge) head on a partisan “news” network!