The World According to Nick
My take on Software, Technology, Politics, and anything else I feel like talking about.
Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Bill O'Reilly Is Afraid Of Me? 

I didn't watch last night's O'Reilly Factor, but Protein Wisdom pointed out that Bill was going after bloggers last night. I decided just for grins to look at the transcript of last night's show to see what on Earth Bill might say now about blogging. These days he seems to bug me more often than not, so I wasn't too surprised when he went off into la la land. First of all... the title of the transcript is "Unresolved Problem: Political Smear Sites". That is the very first thing he thinks about... well... me. I'm not a blogger... I run a smear site.

BILL O'REILLY, HOST: In the "Unresolved Problem" segment tonight, political smear sites. They operate on both sides of the political spectrum. There are no rules. These people will do and say pretty much anything to harm people with whom they disagree politically.

The trend started back in the Clinton-Lewinsky days, and now thousands of bloggers are operating, throwing dirt all over the place. Now they're not all bad. Some of these bloggers are good, accurate watchdogs. But there are plenty of awful ones.

That's right... that's pretty much all we do is throw dirt. But be mindful of where he's going with this. We'll do "pretty much anything to harm people". Of course... the only real tool at the disposal of a blogger... is well... our blog. The only thing we can do to harm people is post words on a website. But I'll keep going through the transcript.

JED BABBIN, CONTRIBUTING EDITOR, AMERICAN SPECTATOR: Well, it was fairly typical of what they always do. They disagreed with something I said on television. It was about the Iraq war and the fact that we did not find Saddam's weapons of mass destruction proved absolutely nothing about whether he had them before the war, because we gave him six months to fiddle and diddle with them and Charles Deulfer's report probably shows that they were taken somewhere else, perhaps, into Syria.

Basically, by the time that I got home, they had somehow found my e-mail address and posted it on their Web site, saying that I was a liar and I'd gotten, oh, I don't know, 100, 150 e-mails, all on the basic eloquence level of liar, liar, pants on fire.

Oh my god! Call the police! They sent him emails! Were you traumatized by this sir? Were they that much harder to filter out of your inbox then all those viagra and mortgage spam emails?

BABBIN: Exactly. It's a little boys, "Lord of the Flies" kind of atmosphere, some of these things. They don't want to be civilized, so they aren't. But they're really not very efficient or effective. I mean, they're more of a nuisance than anything else.

O'REILLY: I have to disagree with you. I think Soros, his money that goes in, and then hires these assassins, does damage. I mean, these are the people who damaged William Bennett. And they tried to damage me.

Before we get to you, Mr. Kline, I'll tell you a funny story. I had Phil Donahue on the air a couple of weeks ago. I had a shoot out with him. And I come in the next day, and I get a big stack of e-mail, of course.

And you could tell the ones that were generated by the crazy left wing Web sites, because the wording was all the same. Here's the wording: "We really like you, Bill, and are big fans of 'The Factor,' but your treatment of Phil Donahue was" - every one was worded the same. And even the misspellings were the same.

Now I don't know what crazy Web site it came from, but it did come from one.

Little boys indeed. You guys sound like little boys complaining to the teacher because some other nasty kids on the playground were saying mean things to you. Should I pat your head Bill and remind you that "Sticks and stones may break your bones, but words will never hurt you"?

And what's with he assassins bit? Who's the crazy one now Bill? Did any of those emails contain threats to shoot you in the head with a high powered rifle? Because that is what assassins do. Assassins don't sit in front of a computer in their pajamas (or boxers in my case) typing words to go onto a webpage.

O'REILLY: But here's the problem: these people are so vicious and the media is so corrupt in taking their uncorroborated, as Mr. Babbin pointed out - defamation that most people now won't run for office, sir. They won't do television and radio commentary. When we had to book this segment, I couldn't get people to come on and say what you guys are saying, because they were afraid that Media Matters would go after them.

I had people turn down this segment - a bunch of them - what are you, crazy? I'm going to criticize these assassins? They'll come after me. And that's a chilling effect.

KLINE: Well, I'm not naming names here, right? I mean, I don't want to get stalked.

O'REILLY: You see, you don't want to get stalked either. So put yourself in a position of somebody running for office or somebody trying to do an honest analysis of the news and they don't want to do it.

Bill O'Reilly is afraid of me? You mean if I keep blogging about him, I can control what he is going to talk about on his show? I can finally take him off the air if I want? In my dreams. Get over yourself Bill. Just like you don't have nearly the amount of influence you brag about on your show (and you brag way to much about it), bloggers don't have nearly the power you attribute to us. Calling us assassins is pretty out there too. That's about equivalent to calling George Bush a terrorist. Give it a rest.


Anytime Bill needs someone to come on his show I'm ready. I'll put up with the "internet crazies." Heck, I haven't had any good hate mail in a long, long time.

  Posted at October 06, 2005 9:21 PM by Anonymous Sean Hackbarth  
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Name: Nick
Home: Wauwatosa, WI, United States

I'm a Software Consultant in the Milwaukee area. Among various geeky pursuits, I'm also an amateur triathlete, and enjoy rock climbing. I also like to think I'm a political pundit.

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