This is a RUSH transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," August 6, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
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BILL O'REILLY, HOST: The top story tonight: How is the media covering the intense health care debate? Joining us from North Carolina, FOX News analyst Bernie Goldberg.
In virtually every report, CBS Evening News, ABC Evening news, NBC Evening News, CNN, every hard news report in the first paragraph or two, it's well, this could be organized, da, da, da, and I don't remember hearing that about the other protests. Do you?
BERNIE GOLDBERG, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: No, and the word hypocrisy in your "Talking Points" is the key word. Civil rights demonstrations, anti-war demonstrations, pro-abortion rights demonstrations, environmental demonstrations, I don't remember the media obsessing about who got these people out to the demonstration site, who orchestrated the demonstration, who manufactured, to use another of their words, the anger at the demonstrations? And nor should the media have looked behind that curtain. Americans have every right to demonstrate. Just as the people who go to these town hall meetings do. Nobody's holding a gun to their head. They go because they want to. Nobody's saying if you don't go, we're going to kidnap your kids. But the media only feels an obligation to look behind the curtain at the forces that are orchestrating and manufacturing the demonstrations when it's a conservative demonstration.
O'REILLY: But here's the rub.
GOLDBERG: That is the hypocrisy.
O'REILLY: The town hall meetings are open to everyone. Everybody can show up. So you could have just as many people fervently wanting Obama's health care plan.
O'REILLY: But you don't. They're either not there, not talking, and then when one of these demonstrators gets up there, maybe the person's a professional plant, maybe a far-right zealot, who knows? We don't know. But the crowd is with them. So what are you telling me?
O'REILLY: That everybody who shows up is organized and that there's nobody on the other side showing up? Doesn't make any sense.
GOLDBERG: No, it doesn't. But I want to look at this from a media point of view. And I'm really glad that you use the word hypocrisy, because that's what runs through all of this. Yesterday, somebody in the Obama administration, Linda Douglas, who I know and I think you know…
GOLDBERG: ...said if you have any fishy, her word, fishy information, misleading information about Obama's health care plan, send it to us at the White House. Look, I'm not one of those paranoids who thinks that, oh yeah, they're going to get the names of the people and then, you know, sick the IRS on them. I'm not saying that. But can you imagine, Bill, can you imagine if somebody in the George W. Bush administration…
O'REILLY: Sure, they would have gone wild.
GOLDBERG: …said if you disagree with the — if somebody disagrees with the president, send us those e-mails. The New York Times would run a month-long page one series, and the stories about the fascistic Bush administration would be under headlines the size of the "U.S. Bomb Hiroshima."
O'REILLY: No doubt. And it's interesting you mentioned that because in the block after you, the B block after you, we're going to discuss that very thing with Judge Napolitano, who says there is a fascistic element to it.
All right, now, so that once again, we know that the reportage in America, we're talking hard news reportage now, isn't fair and balanced. That if it is a left-wing cause and organized by Internet sites or whatever on the left, that's fine. There's no problem with that. We're not even going to bother to cover it. But if it is a conservative movement, or organized by the right, then there's something dastardly about it. And I don't think it's any — that's as clear as it can get.
GOLDBERG: I totally agree. I'll give you another example. There have been a number of columns, just in the past couple of days saying that the entire Republican Party is a lunatic party because of the nutjob birthers, people who they think Obama was born on, you know, Saturn or some place, OK? Well, and one columnist, Eugene Robinson of The Washington Post points to a poll and says 28 percent of Republicans believe Obama was not born in the United States. Let's set aside for a second that the poll was commissioned by the Daily Kos.
O'REILLY: And Robinson didn't mention that.
GOLDBERG: Let's just put that aside.
O'REILLY: Robinson didn't mention the poll, right. He didn't mention that.
GOLDBERG: Look, in fairness, Bill, I think he did, but let's just put that aside. What about just a few years ago when several polls came out that showed that 35 percent, 35 is more than 28, by the way, 35 percent of Democrats believe that George Bush and the neocons were behind the attacks on 9/11.
O'REILLY: The truthers, yeah.
GOLDBERG: I don't remember, yeah, the, right, I don't remember liberal journalists writing stories about how the whole Democratic Party needs to explain this or that how the Democratic Party is a magnet for lunatics.
GOLDBERG: Nor should they have written it. But when it's a right-wing nutjob movement, then again, we get…
O'REILLY: Yeah, and then it gets the big headlines.
GOLDBERG: …we get a special scrutiny.
O'REILLY: Maybe he did point out that it was Kos, but you're absolutely right that there — and this is very clear. Now, it's funny you bring up the birthers. Lou Dobbs has been covering that story a lot. We have told, you know, we have told Mr. Dobbs that we think he's wrong to cover it, however, he does have freedom of speech. And if he wants to cover it, it's up to him. He was attacked along with his wife and children, Bernie, on NBC News airwaves. His wife and children brutally, personally attacked. Lou Dobbs. How long do you think Jeffrey Immelt, CEO of GE and Jeff Zucker, NBC boss, are going to allow this barbaric display under the NBC News banner? How long is that going to be?
GOLDBERG: Well, first, let me explain that what the people, some people at NBC said was that here's Lou Dobbs who's crusading against immigration. Not true. He crusades against illegal immigration and he's married to a Hispanic woman. Bill, you need to help me out on this. I'm totally confused. Can't you be against illegal immigration and be married to Hispanic woman at the same time? This is just plain dumb.
As for your question how long can this dumbness go on, the media in the past 20, 30 years has really not reflected the values of the American people. We know that. But when you are so out of touch with the values of the American people that you do stuff like that, the public will turn on you. And it will affect you in ways that you — you think it will only affect the people…
O'REILLY: But it's already happened. The NBC network is down the drain. It's destroyed, but they still allow these attacks to happen.
GOLDBERG: But, Bill, it will be like a slow poison that infects every other segment of that company…
O'REILLY: It already has.
GOLDBERG: ...if they don't wise up.
O'REILLY: It already has. So I just don't know how much longer — when you have — and we respect Mr. Dobbs. Whether you agree with him or not, when your family, your wife and children are attacked on the NBC News airwaves? It doesn't get lower.
Bernie, thanks very much. We appreciate it.
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