Hi, I'm Bill O'Reilly, thanks for watching us tonight.
Corruption in the federal government, that explosive topic is the subject of this evening's Talking Points memo.
U.S. Attorney Mary Jo White is quitting her job here in New York. Miss White was in charge of the Marc Rich pardon investigation, the Hillary Clinton vote-buying probe, and the Senator Robert Torricelli alleged bribery situation. Some big cases, obviously.
Former attorney general Janet Reno also oversaw some big cases, the Chinese military funneling money to the DNC, the Wen Ho Lee espionage case, the FBI files situation, and many more.
Now, both Miss Reno and Miss White have one thing in common. Despite having their salaries paid by the American taxpayer, they flat-out refuse to tell us anything about their vital investigations.
Miss Reno fled to Florida, no-commenting all the way. And now Miss White is refusing to answer any questions as well.
Legally, these civil servants can address any issue other than secret grand jury testimony. Morally, both Reno and White have an obligation to inform the American people about corruption investigations, and indeed, both presidents, Clinton and Bush, should have ordered these women to be candid and honest with the public. That, of course, is a pipe dream.
One of the worst things about America these days is that the federal government does not believe it is accountable to the people. There is a siege mentality about any hint of corruption, and the powerful do protect each other.
No one I know in law enforcement seriously believes that Attorney General Ashcroft has any interest at all in getting to the bottom of the Marc Rich pardon given by President Clinton. The same thing is true with the Torricelli situation. No one in Washington believes the Senate Ethics Committee will do anything.
Both Janet Reno and Mary Jo White understand that very well. They know the less said the better, that if they actually told the American people what they know about corruption, they'd get into big trouble.
The Enron situation is another tragic example. Here we have a major American corporation lying to their stockholders and to the press. We did a segment on this last night, and I received hundreds of letters saying that Americans who bought Enron stock were responsible and not the dishonest executives.
That view is insane. Enron's accountants were constantly putting out misleading reports, and insider selling is not made public until months after it happens. Attorney General Ashcroft should be all over this situation. The FBI should be grilling the accountants and executives, and the U.S. attorney in Houston should be preparing indictments right now.
But Enron executives are close to Vice President Dick Cheney, and they still have power in Republican circles. So we'll see if anything will be done.
The more corruption that is tolerated by the feds, the weaker the United States becomes. The Clinton administration was flat-out corrupt, and now the Bush administration seems willing to keep silent on urgent matters.
It's bad, and you should know it.
And that's the memo.
The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
Time now for "The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day."
Hot on the heels of Sex and the City, HBO will air a program called Monica in Black and White on March 3rd. Yes, that Monica Lewinsky will finally talk about her ordeal with Mr. Clinton. HBO says Ms. Lewinsky will also do some press promoting the special. We, of course, would love to have her here on The Factor, but the odds of that happening are probably ridiculous.
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