Talking Points

The Election and the Muslim Controversy


By Bill O'Reilly


There is no question that the economy will drive the vote this year, as it should. America remains a bad jobs place despite massive federal spending.


But there is another component that may influence the upcoming vote, and that is the divide between liberal and conservative Americans. The recent Muslim controversy highlights that divide, as conservatives generally believe there is a major Muslim problem in the world and liberals tend to downplay the situation.


Listen to these stats: Since the attack on Sept. 11, 2001, more than 40,000 people have been killed by Muslim extremists worldwide, the result of more than 17,000 attacks. And we're not even counting the American troops killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.


Forty thousand human beings dead because of Muslim terror activity.


In addition, since 9/11, the USA has spent more than $1 trillion combating Muslim terror threats, including the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. $1 trillion in less than 10 years. And you're telling me there isn't a Muslim problem in the world?


Many Americans also remember celebrations after the 9/11 attacks. To be fair, they were brief and mostly Palestinian-driven, but the images are indelible.


So there is no question that most Americans are a bit uneasy about the turbulence in the Muslim world. That may not be fair, but it's reality.


It is testimony to the nobility of America that there have been relatively few anti-Muslim incidents in this country. There are far more in Western Europe, where the Muslim intrusion is causing a political divide in some countries. We don't have that here. Americans believe Muslim-Americans are loyal citizens, and indeed the facts prove that.


When voters show up a week from Tuesday, the Muslim situation will not be first on their minds; economic well-being will be.


But as the NPR fiasco and "The View" fracas prove, Americans are in no mood for politically correct nonsense about the Muslim threat. It is real. The Taliban is real. Al Qaeda is real. And the Islamic theocracy of Iran is perhaps the most threatening nation on Earth.


I rest my case.


And that's "The Memo."


Pinheads & Patriots



George Clooney appeared with Bill Maher this week:




BILL MAHER, HOST, "REAL TIME WITH BILL MAHER": I think this is the big difference between liberals and conservatives. You know, I don't think conservatives are bad people. I think they have a hard time being empathetic to people who are not like them at all.


GEORGE CLOONEY, ACTOR: OK, now wait, I'll tell you -- I'll tell why that's not necessarily true, because this movement, the Sudanese movement, Darfur, the north-south agreement, were really, truly embraced by the right even more so than the left.




Is Mr. Clooney's assessment patriotic or pinheaded? You can vote on


Last week we asked you to weigh in on Katie Couric, who objected to some explicit photos taken of two "Glee" cast members:




KATIE COURIC, CBS NEWS: These very adult photos of young women who perform in a family show just seem so un-"Glee"-like. The program is already edgy in the right ways. These images don't really, in my humble opinion, fit the "Glee" gestalt.




Well somewhat surprisingly, 60 percent say Couric is a pinhead for saying that. Only 40 percent say she is a patriot. I think her take is patriotic. Lots of young girls watch "Glee."