Hi, I'm Bill O'Reilly. Thanks for watching us tonight.
National Public Radio (search) comes clean. That is the subject of this evening's Talking Points Memo. You may remember the dust-up I had with NPR a few days ago. The "Fresh Air" program did a hatchet job interview on me and I called them on it.
I was there to promote my new book, Who's Looking Out for You. The interviewer had another agenda. More than a million of you went on to billoreilly.com to hear that interview. And thousands wrote to NPR, which replied late Friday.
Ombudsman Jeffrey Dvorkin (search) called the incident a "culture clash." And that's true. NPR is a left leaning outfit, which embraces a very politically correct point of view and I am more tradition in my analysis.
Dvorkin took some shots at me, but his conclusion was startling. He wrote, "I believe the listeners were not well served by this interview.unfortunately, the interview only served to confirm the belief, held by some, in NPR's liberal bias. By coming across as a pro-Franken partisan rather than a neutral and curious journalist, [Terry] Gross did almost nothing that might have allowed the interview to develop. By the time the interview was about halfway through, it felt as though Terry Gross (search) was indeed `carrying Al Franken's water,' as some listeners say. It was not about O'Reilly's ideas, or his attitudes or even about his book. It was about O'Reilly as political media phenomenon. That's a legitimate subject for discussion, but in this case, it was an interview that was, in the end, unfair to O'Reilly."
Well, okay, I appreciate Mr. Dvorkin's analysis, but he misses the big point. Why did Ms. Gross do what she did? She's been around a while. She knows what she's doing. Why did she do it?
I can only speculate, but based on my observations, NPR presents a progressive international and generally left leaning point of view. That's fine with me. I like strong points of view that are well thought out.
But once again, it is not fine with me to have to pay for this. NPR and PBS should stop taking government money and compete in the media marketplace. Al Gore wants a network, he should buy these.
Finally, the usual chorus of newspaper ideologues masquerading as journalists heavily criticized me for the NPR deal. One blatant example, writing in The St. Paul Pioneer Press (search), TV critic Bryant Lambert stated that I came off like a delusional paranoid in the interview.
Mr. Lambert has an agenda a mile long and has consistently attacked this network, most of the time unfairly. The good people of Minnesota should know that this guy is intellectually dishonest, so don't expect the truth from him vis-a-vis Fox News.
In the end, this whole ordeal was worthwhile because it did reveal the truth. The "Fresh Air" (search) program is presided over by a woman who brings her sensibilities to the table, but does not define those sensibilities. Instead, she conducts interviews on a wide range of subjects with seeming neutrality, but she is not neutral. I always knew it and now you do, too.
Thanks again to the NPR ombudsman. His entire critique is posted on billoreilly.com.
And that's The Memo.
The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
Time now for "The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day."
Even though I was out on the West Coast over the weekend, I missed the annual Exotic Erotic Ball held in San Francisco. Thousands gathered at the Cow Palace (search) to watch sex stuff go on and generally cavort around in a style some San Franciscans embrace.
It's probably good I didn't get to this event because I really don't understand much of what we are seeing right now. I'm sure if I had been raised in the City of San Francisco, I'd have been more attuned to the erotic exotic experience.
[Videotape of the event] Look at that guy. What is he doing?
But since I wasn't raised there and I was raised on Long Island and am of Irish descent, a lot of this stuff is lost on me.
Who's that guy? What is he doing?
It might even be ridiculous, but, again, I have no idea.
--You can watch Bill O'Reilly's Talking Points Memo and "Most Ridiculous Item" weeknights at 8 & 11p.m. ET on the Fox News Channel. Send your comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bill O'Reilly currently serves as the host of FOX News Channel's (FNC) The O'Reilly Factor (weekdays 8PM/ET), the most watched cable news show for the past 13 years. He joined the network in 1996 and is based in New York. Click here for more information on Bill O'Reilly.