In its lead editorial today, the committed-left New York Times is furious about the border fence and an intense crackdown on illegal immigrants by authorities in the Phoenix area. Under a new federal program, local authorities in Maricopa County are now asking people about their immigration status and passing the information on to the feds.

The Times says this is an unjust war on illegal immigrants. Others applaud the program. And some Mexican officials have even complained that too many folks are returning to that country and they are now overwhelmed.

It's important to understand what's really going on here. Last week, the ultra-liberal mayor of San Francisco, Gavin Newsom, publicly announced that illegal aliens are welcomed and city authorities will protect them, the exact opposite of what's going on in Arizona.

So this has become an ideological struggle: the left wanting to continue the open border pro-illegal atmosphere, the right demanding a crackdown. And both sides are very angry.

Conservatives don't want America changed by a massive influx of foreign workers, period. Liberals do want big change in the country and realize the only way to get the so-called progressive measures into law is to change voting patterns. Millions of new voters will greatly benefit the Democratic Party because most immigrants are poor and need entitlements.

When my ancestors arrived here legally from Ireland in the 19th century, the Democrats in New York City immediately signed them up. The same thing's happening today.

So what is going on in Arizona and San Francisco is a great example of the intense battle over the future of America: drastic change vs. the traditional landscape. That's why The New York Times and others want amnesty and the continuation of the alien flow. Future votes for their side.

And that's "The "Memo."

Pinheads & Patriots

The patriot today is a regular "Factor" viewer. His name is Don Sterling. He lives in Medford, New York. And even though he didn't win a tie in the auction for the Wounded Warrior Project we had this week, he wrote to me: "Bill, I was outbid, but I'd still like to donate $1,000 to the cause. Please advise."

Wounded Warrior information is on BillOReilly.com, Don. And you are a patriot for your generosity. I'm also going to send you a tie.

On the pinhead front, an illuminating conversation between Martha Stewart and Rosie O'Donnell.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MARTHA STEWART, HOST, "THE MARTHA STEWART SHOW": You did really well on "The View."

ROSIE O'DONNELL: I tried my best.

STEWART: You did.

O'DONNELL: You know, it's hard for me when I'm not the boss.

STEWART: I know. We know.

O'DONNELL: There were people telling me what to do. There was a little Republican who scared me.

STEWART: All right.

O'DONNELL: The whole thing, you know.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

For conducting that interview, Martha Stewart — "I know, I know" — is a pinhead.

You can catch Bill O'Reilly's "Talking Points Memo" and "Pinheads and Patriots" weeknights at 8 and 11 p.m. ET on the FOX News Channel and any time on foxnews.com/oreilly. Send your comments to: oreilly@foxnews.com