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Hi, I'm Bill O'Reilly. Thank you for watching us tonight.
A tale of two Americas is he subject of this evening's Talking Points Memo.
While most of us are looking forward to a nice weekend, thousands of American troops in Afghanistan are just trying to stay alive. The war on terror's most vicious fighting is going on right now in the mountains adjacent to Pakistan. Eight Americans have already been killed, more than 40 wounded.
So loyal Americans should be thinking about the sacrifice our forces are making. And if you are a spiritual person, you might want to say a prayer or two on their behalf.
And while that fighting is going on back home, we are wrestling with corporate greed on a scale never before seen in America. In effect, our soldiers are protecting some people who are flat-out disgraceful.
People like Gary Winnick, the head of the now-bankrupt Global Crossing company. Winnick and his minions lied to the financial analysts about that company's future, and while he was touting his company, Global Crossing, Winnick was taking profits on its stock to the tune of more than $700 million.
And what did Winnick do in the middle of his company's collapse? He bought a home in Los Angeles worth more than $100 million.
So while Americans who held Global Crossing stock in mutual funds or 401(K)s got wiped out, Winnick is living like a sultan.
But still, some Americans find this acceptable. Bill Spalding who lives in Murdock, Washington, writes, "Mr. O'Reilly, you seem quite upset at the immoral way you perceive Mr. Winnick made his millions. As far as I know, what he did was perfectly legal. It's called capitalism."
You are misguided, Mr. Spalding, with all due respect. Winnick knew his company was in trouble, and he gutted it for all it was worth because he had a unique vantage point. I believe he also told some of his pals, like DNC chief Terry McAuliffe, what the inside situation was so they could get out. I could be wrong about McAuliffe, but I know how these power people work. If you think, Mr. Spalding, that Winnick was playing by the same rules that the everyday investor was playing by, you're living in Never Never Land.
Insider selling has become a scandal in this country, and you're right, Winnick may not have broken the law, because the law is so lax that weasels like him can manipulate it. President Bush is right in ordering the SEC to toughen up the rules against dishonest executives.
Talking Points is simply stunned that some Americans sympathize with the likes of Gary Winnick, Kenneth Lay, and the rest. These are greedy, ruthless people who have done tremendous damage to our capitalistic system. They should be pariahs in our society. Winnick should sit there in his $100 million palace and everybody in L.A. should completely ignore him. Riding a corporation into bankruptcy while enriching yourself is immoral, period.
And with American soldiers being killed protecting our way of life here, my anger towards the Gary Winnicks of the world is intensifying.
And that's the memo.
The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
Time now for "Most Ridiculous Item of the Day."
Former Enron chief Kenneth Lay, who made tens of millions of dollars running that now-bankrupt company, also got some money from you and me.
Lay owns some land in Missouri— farm land. And under the unbelievably corrupt farm subsidy situation we have in America, he received more than $12,000 taxpayer dollars for... "restoring the land." From what I know about the farm subsidy swindle, that means he could have cut down a few weeds. Ridiculous? Of course. But then again, so is Kenneth Lay.
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