Chalk up Bill O’Reilly as the latest Fox News personality who has hastily cast his vote for Chris Kyle, the Navy SEAL sniper who told O’Reilly last week that he once punched Jesse Ventura – a claim Ventura vehemently denies. Unlike Fox News’ The Five hosts, at least O’Reilly came up with some evidence to support his conclusion. But it’s not like anyone bothered to do any real digging. In fact, it looks a lot like someone from Fox got the names of two of Kyle’s buddies and when they confirmed Kyle’s account, that was all they cared about. Investigating a guest claiming to have punched the former governor of Minnesota? Not nearly as important as, say, discovering why a holiday gift room of an elementary school in Massachusetts prefers non-Christmas items.
Last night (1/13/12), O’Reilly promised in a tease that he’d “present the evidence so you can decide” whether Kyle or Ventura was telling the truth. In fact, he stuck the “evidence” in his “Dumbest Things of the Week” segment near the end of the show. Before he got to Kyle and Ventura, we learned about a Colorado senior who wanted to use a topless photo as her yearbook picture.
O’Reilly never explained what was so dumb about Kyle – or was it Ventura? Instead, O'Reilly played a clip of Kyle saying he punched Ventura followed by a clip of Ventura saying it never happened.
“So who do you believe?” O’Reilly asked. “Well, we investigated. Now there are two eyewitnesses, two SEALS." O’Reilly named one of them. “He says that Kyle knocked (Ventura) down. And another SEAL who’s on active duty didn’t want his name used, and he said this is true that because Ventura said bad things about the Navy SEALs, that Kyle knocked him down. Now, both of these men are friends of Kyle’s.”
So did anyone ask Ventura for witnesses or check with the bar owner, as Ventura suggested? It does not appear to be the case.
Nevertheless, O’Reilly said, “But I tend to believe Kyle’s telling the truth… I think he is.”
One of O’Reilly’s guests was Greg Gutfeld, one of the co-hosts of The Five who had responded to Ventura's demand for a retraction by calling him “a giant boob.”
Gutfeld was more restrained this time, saying it was ironic that Ventura, a 9/11 Truther, was now in a position of having to prove something isn’t true. But O’Reilly’s other guest, Arthel Neville, immediately hopped on the Ventura-sneering bandwagon. She announced, “I tend to believe the Navy SEAL in this story,” (of course, Ventura is a former SEAL as well, which nobody mentioned). Then like so many of her Fox News colleagues, she suggested that Ventura deserved to get decked. “If Mr. Ventura is anti-war, that is his prerogative but you can’t go popping off at the mouth about it to Iraqi vets.” Ventura denies he mouthed off, too, but if anyone knew that, they didn’t think it worth mentioning.
“We’re not justifying anything that happened, we just want to know what happened,” O’Reilly claimed. Meaning, apparently, he wanted to know what happened without doing much to find out. Having one named source was enough, even if he wasn't exactly objective, O’Reilly concluded. “Then we gotta go with that,” he said.
Nobody thought it worth pointing out that Kyle’s new book is published by a sister company to Fox News. So everyone at Fox has an incentive to bolster the reputation of the author.
It may well be that Kyle actually did punch Ventura. But this little charade of an investigation did little to nothing to persuade me. It hasn’t done much to enhance Fox News’ credibility either.
And he’s up to what, 3 dozen lies on the stuff that does warrant detail? I favour lie on this…
Ventura never had a problem saying he’s pre-merge UDT when asked what outfit. Why it’s so important we call him a UDT all of a sudden is almost as retarded as the people who thought his service was exempt from the “Respect soldiers and veterans!” line just because he served in office as an independent.
According to his original story, the police were already showing up when he hit Ventura, so where’s the police report for that?
Was Ventura arrested for (or at least cited with) disorderly conduct? Even if he was just escorted out, there will be a report for that. same as if an APB was put out on Kyle for the punch- or fleeing the scene.
Kyle was still active military in 2006. Where’s his military review for the incident? It doesn’t matter how much they supported him punching Ventura, the military and the police are required to inform each other of non-military crimes involving active soldiers.
Example: The military has to report spousal abuse to the police because they can’t intervene legally. At the same time, the police are required to report items like a soldier/officer starting a barfight so the soldier/officer’s conduct can be reviewed despite that the military had no authority other than other soldiers present being permitted (and “encouraged”) to restrain him and stop him from fleeing.
Which brings me to my next point- where’s the evidence of their reviews for allowing him to run? Where’s the interview documents of why no one just escorted Ventura out before it got that far? Ventura was disturbing a wake if this is true, they could have just shown him the door- or had someone else do it.
Why no pre-existing accounts? Why no footage or photos?
Why was this never a rumour about Ventura? He clearly has enough people who hate him to get it around the world a few times. I can’t find blogs or pictures of a post-punch in the face Ventura. If Kyle knocked him hard enough that he want down and had touble getting up, there’d be pictures of him with marks, right? Bent nose, black eye, fat lip?
Seriously… this is not hard at all, guys. Try harder, try again.