Saturday, January 19, 2008

Why does Bill O'Reilly hate John Edwards?

When a supposed journalist working for a supposed news network spends multiple segments of his supposed news program calling a politician a liar, a phony, a charlatan, etc. for making a statement that was factually accurate, shouldn't that supposed news network expect that the supposed journalist make an apology and a retraction?

The answer is obvious, but when that exact scenario happened at Fox News on the O'Reilly Factor, Bill O'Reilly, after having stated in response to Edwards's correct assertion that there are 200,000 homeless veterans in America that "the only thing sleeping under a bridge is [Edwards's] brain" and mocked Edwards with "we’re still looking for all the veterans sleeping under the bridges, Ed [Schultz], so if you find anybody, let us know, because that’s all the guy [Edwards] said for the last three nights" while issuing an assortment of insults against him, changes the subject after finding out Edwards was correct and says, "We deal with facts here on The Factor, not fiction. John Edwards owes us an apology. "

Are you *bleeping* kidding me?

Here we have O'Reilly, who is constantly doing his generic Joe McCarthy routine where he accuses people of not supporting the troops, attacking a presidential candidate for - gasp! - informing the American public that a couple hundred thousand vets are homeless. Then when he finds out Edwards is correct O'Reilly then demands an apology from Edwards. This is beyond satire.

Why? Why does O'Reilly hate John Edwards so much? If you've been following O'Reilly at all you'd have noticed he has been calling Edwards a loser and a sham and what not for months now. I think the answer is quite simple: Bill O'Reilly hates John Edwards because he is the populist that O'Reilly pretends to be.

Now, I don't mean that O'Reilly consciously thinks that, but that that reality is at the bottom of the animus that O'Reilly has for Edwards. Edwards supports policies that would benefit the people that O'Reilly believes himself to be the champion of, and thus Edwards presents a challenge to his worldview.

Of course, in reality O'Reilly's third greatest fear* is that he might have to pay a higher tax rate, which has nothing to do with being a man of the people. But self-justification is the path of least resistance for O'Reilly, so he somehow manages to recast in his own mind his own financial self-interest as a populist position in order to get rid of any pesky cognitive dissonance.

Here's what really ticks me off, though. O'Reilly supports and promotes an endless war in Iraq that is bankrupting the nation, leaving us with less means to provide social services and foisting onto future generations the responsibility of paying off this one's debts, yet Mr. Generic Joe McCarthy isn't willing to "undergo the fatigues of supporting" the war in Iraq. And unlike Paine, we're not even talking about actually having to fight the war he supports, just to fund it.

But in O'Reilly's world, him not wanting his taxes rate raised makes him a man of the people and John Edwards wanting to do something about our rigged to benefit the super-wealthy economic system makes him a populist phony.

*O'Reilly's second greatest fear being that someone, somewhere will say something critical of President Bush; and his greatest fear being that someone, somewhere will say something critical of Bill O'Reilly.


libhom said...

Bill O'Reilly will feverishly attack anyone whose statements or actions go against corporate interests.

Edwards does deserve credit for putting the spotlight on this national disgrace.

Steve Johnson said...

I don't understand it at all. It seems like the people who should be most outraged by the fact that we have homeless veterans are the ones who talk about how they support the troops over and over again. Liberals always have to make the point (because if the don't Republicans attack) that they are against the war, but still support the troops. Bill O'Reilly is someone who supports the war, but doesn't support the troops.