In this country, we love freedom. Cars symbolize freedom. You get in, turn a key, and ride wherever you want to ride. Many Americans cherish their cars and their mobility.

We also love convenience. We like things done fast. Pull up to a gas station, push a button, gas goes into the car, we drive off. We love that. So messing with the car and with the easy fuel is a hard sell in America, but now we have to mess with those things.

Tuesday, President Bush was asked why he's not pounding the drum on conservation.


PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: It's a little presumptuous on my part to dictate to consumers how they live their lives. The American people are plenty capable and plenty smart people, and they'll make adjustments to their own pocketbooks.


Now while the president's correct that many of us don't like politicians telling us how to live, there comes a time when leaders have to lead.

Right now, about $330 billion American dollars are going overseas every year to buy petroleum products. That weakens the U.S. dollar because it's so available and strengthens people like Hugo Chavez and the oil sheiks.

If most of those dollars are spent here in the USA, the economy would be much stronger, obviously, the trade deficit much lower and the dollar far more valuable.

A strong economy is a national security issue. So is a reliable and affordable energy supply. If national security can be upgraded by Americans using less fuel, then we should all use less fuel. It's not just a pocketbook issue. It's a strong country issue.

But for decades our pinheaded politicians have been playing politics with oil, and now we have a big problem.

Of course, we should have more drilling. Of course, we should have much more alternative energy. But we don't because no one led on the issue.

The world's changing, and change is inconvenient. Cars and fuel will have to change. That's not going to be easy. But Americans should understand that it has to happen, and we desperately need leadership on the issue.

And that's "The Memo."

Pinheads & Patriots

We were remiss in not congratulating swimmer Dara Torres for making the U.S. Olympic team at age 41. Ms. Torres is going to her fifth Olympics, an amazing achievement.

Of course, we're rooting for her to win another medal. She's already won nine. Ms. Torres is a patriot.

On the pinhead front, you're not going to believe this exchange at a Dallas County Commissioners meeting.

Click here to watch Pinheads & Patriots.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It sounds like Central Collections has become a black hole.

JOHN WILEY PRICE, DALLAS COUNTY COMMISSIONER: Can I get an apology from the commissioner? In this day and time, you don't sit around the table where you have diversity and refer to a black hole.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, sure I do...


Black hole is in space. Now John Wiley Price, one of the commissioners who was offended — you just heard him there — made it worse when he talked to a FOX News reporter.


PRICE: If it's angel food cake, it's white. If it's devil's food cake, it's black. If you're the black sheep of the family, then you've got to be bad, you know? White sheep, you're OK. I'm OK if I'm bartering with you, I'm OK. But if I try to Jew you down, oh, is that racist? I thought it meant the same thing. No, maybe it doesn't.


Pinhead doesn't even begin to cover this.

You can catch Bill O'Reilly's "Talking Points Memo" and "Pinheads & 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