Last November "The Factor" drove the O.J. Simpson book story even though the parent company of the FOX News Channel was paying Simpson and I don't believe that would have happened at any other network but Fox News allowed me to drill Simpson between the eyes and the public outcry forced the cancellation of that ill conceived project as you'll remember.
Now we have a similar situation at a much lower level. NBC News apparently tried to buy access to Paris Hilton and a published report said that the price offered was a million bucks. In my opinion, Simpson is a killer and obviously Ms. Hilton's DUI conviction and subsequent probation violation is insignificant in compared to murder. But the bottomed line is the same: rewarding bad behavior. Now late this afternoon NBC apparently backed out of the Hilton deal, realizing its image was at stake.
We've been telling you for more than a year that all standards have evaporated at NBC News and that's true and just where were the NBC News people themselves? What did they say? The silence is deafening, their credibility crumbling.
There's no question that American culture is in decline and that people like Ms. Hilton are being rewarded for misguided behavior. If she does show up on NBC News or anywhere else millions will watch it.
But we as a society are paying a price ourselves for our voyeurism. Millions of young American people have trouble telling right from wrong because they see the media blur those lines every day. And for some Paris Hilton is actually a person to be admired, a big star. And if this woman gets a million bucks from NBC or anybody else she'll be even bigger.
There comes a point where clear thinking Americans have to just walk away. The ratings at NBC News are in decline because there's something very wrong over there and the folks sense it.
At face value Paris Hilton is insignificant but as a display of what the culture and the media have become in the United States, she's important. The justice system sent Paris Hilton a message and so did NBC News. Which message do you believe is appropriate?
And that's "The Memo."
Most Ridiculous Item
The airline Caro has hired models to walk the aisles in, well, rather unusual airline attire. Caro executives say this will help relax passengers. Indeed.
This is a pilot program -- sorry. But if it takes off -- sorry again -- maybe we'll see it in the USA. But I doubt it, because the ladies would have a lot of trouble getting through security checks.
Might be ridiculous. Ecuador...
—You can catch Bill O'Reilly's "Talking Points Memo" and "Most Ridiculous Item" weeknights at 8 and 11 p.m. ET on the FOX News Channel and any time on foxnews.com/oreilly. Send your comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org