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Big Super Bowl interview

This is a RUSH transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," January 27, 2014. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

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UNIDENTIFIED MALE ANNOUNCER: THE O'REILLY FACTOR, the number one cable news show for 14 years running.

O'REILLY: Thanks for staying with us. I'm Bill O'Reilly, reporting tonight from Boston.

In the "Weekdays with Bernie" segment, two interesting situations beginning --


-- with The New York Times column by a far left guy named Steve Almond published yesterday. In that piece, Mr. Almond says that Americans are wrong for supporting the Super Bowl, quote, "Pro sports are, by definition, monetized arenas for hypermasculinity."

"Football is nowhere near as overtly vicious as, say, boxing. But it is one sport that most faithfully recreates -- recreates, I should say, recreates our childhood fantasies of war as a winnable contest."

"Over the past 12 years, as Americans have sought a distraction from the moral incoherence of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the game has served as a loyal and satisfying proxy," unquote.


Joining us now from Miami to react, the purveyor of, Mr. Goldberg. Just by way of telling the audience who this guy is, he resigned -- he was teaching --


O'REILLY: -- at Boston College --


-- because Condoleezza Rice was chosen as commencement speaker. So, this is an off-the-chart left guy. Does he have any points.

GOLDBERG: Yes. I watch a lot of football and I've never thought of it as a proxy for the war in Iraq or Afghanistan. And my guess is that unless you're, you know, residing on a liberal college campus someplace, you haven't thought of it that way either. That's number one.

Number two, I read the headline, Is it Immoral to Watch the Super Bowl. And I thought, coming from this guy who quit his post at Boston College because of Condoleezza Rice, --


-- I thought here's more liberal nonsense coming down the pipe. But then, I read the piece.


And he makes an interesting point. His main point is that football players have suffered catastrophic brain injury --


-- because of playing football in the NFL. There's no question about that. He's absolutely right.

Then he says, "The only reason they're playing is because millions and millions of Americans watch the game. And he, for one, no longer wants to be "complicit," his word. He thinks it's immoral, so he won't watch.


This is not, Bill. This is not a crazy position for him. But if you follow his logic, that means you can't watch college football either because they also suffer brain damage.

I've done stories on this on HBO's Real Sports. You can't watch high school football. They also suffer brain damage. You can't watch, of course, boxing or mix martial arts.

You can't watch Nascar. They're -- the biggest star of that sport was killed in their Super Bowl, the Daytona 500, Dale Earnhardt. And because he brought --


-- morality up, -- I didn't, he brought it up, I would make the case that you can't even watch college basketball. Not because of brain trauma but because --


-- you can make a case immoral that it's immoral for these players who are bringing in hundreds of millions of dollars and getting paid absolutely nothing, while their coaches make $2, 3, 4 , 5 million dollars.

And the NCA guys and the commissioners make lots and lots of money. And all they get is a free college education which, half the time, is a scam also. So, I think his position is fine for him.

For me and for millions of others, we get too much pleasure out of watching this. But if in five, or 10, or 20 years, or someplace down the road, I agree with him that too many people are going brain dead over this, I might have the same position. But not today --

O'REILLY: You know, I kind of gave up following boxing. I kind of gave up following boxing because of what happened to Muhammad Ali.

GOLDBERG: For that reason?

O'REILLY: Yes, for that reason, pretty much. I mean -- but I admire the skill involved in these very brutal games. And I did play football myself.

And I wouldn't allow my son to play. I think it did more good for me as far as discipline, as far as competition, skill, practicing, achieving, than the risk of injury, which is in every sport. Every sport has it.

All right, is it good. It's an interesting discussion but I'm not going to feel --

GOLDBERG: But in your case, Bill, --

O'REILLY: Yes, I know. Go ahead, take your shot. Go ahead.

GOLDBERG: Oh, you see. You saw that coming just from those few words. That's fantastic.



Everybody saw it coming, Goldberg.

GOLDBERG: I didn't think so. OK, go ahead. I won't do it. I will not say that --

O'REILLY: No, no, no. They want to know. Go ahead, go ahead. They want to know.

GOLDBERG: I am not going to say but, in your case, playing football did cause brain damage. I'm not going -- I won't say that.

O'REILLY: All right, good. I'm glad you're not going to say it.

GOLDBERG: That would be cheap shot.

O'REILLY: OK, the brain damage guy is going to be in the White House on Sunday, --


-- two hours before the Super Bowl, the live interview to the President. Now, that I don't think Mr. Almond is going to want to watch either because there could be a concussion there.


What would you ask him.

GOLDBERG: Here's what I would suggest that you ask him and I hope you -- seriously, I hope you take this into account, "Mr. President," "Secretary of Defense Paneta and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs General Dempsey told you that the attack in Benghazi was a terrorist attack while it was going on, not a day later, not a week later, while it was going on, they told you that. Yet, for week, Mr. President, you and people who work for you misled the American people."

"You told us about an anti-Muslim video, you told us about riots that got out of hand. So, a two-part question, Mr. President -- a, why did you allow the American people to be misled when you knew the truth. And b, when Hillary Clinton said, `What difference does it make at this point why they were killed,' do you agree with that statement. Do you think it makes no difference either."

O'REILLY: All right, it's a good question. It's long. I only have 15 minutes and that question was like 7 1/2. But give me one more.

GOLDBERG: You know -- you want more. I'll give you one more real quick, "Mr. President, why this ongoing war against Fox News. You say that Fox makes a caricature of you. But Fox didn't create Benghazi. Fox didn't create ObamaCare. Fox didn't create the IRS going after conservatives.

"Fox reported those stories truthfully. So, why this ongoing battle, this verbal battle against Fox. Your people, Mr. President, did Benghazi, the IRS, and ObamaCare, not Fox."

O'REILLY: All right. Now, remember those two questions now have taken up 10 minutes out of the 15. But I'll get them more concise. I'll kind of squeeze them down, if my dementia isn't fogging my mind at that point, which I don't think it will be.

GOLDBERG: It probably will be though. It probably will be.

O'REILLY: Now, Goldberg, you have to be brutal next week in critiquing the interview. So, just don't miss it. I don't want you snatching somewhere and missing it.

GOLDBERG: Oh, jeez.

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