There is no question that most media want to see Barack Obama get elected president. Anyone who disputes that is living la vida loca, no doubt.

The problem for the media is that most Americans are not committed liberals and are fair-minded folks who want a president who will look out for them. So in the vote next November, ideology will play only a minor part.

Understanding that, the media has a new theme: that the USA is a "nation in decline." The New York Times has used that exact phrase.

And many liberals truly believe that America is going downhill fast. They point to the bad economy, the gap between the rich and the poor, and the damage Iraq has done to our image abroad.

But the political component here is this: If the decline theory takes root, more voters will want significant change. So let's take a look.

With gas prices pretty much out of control, the economy is getting hammered. Both parties are at fault. We are suffering, and our politicians are pretty much clueless.

Of course, the situation will eventually right itself and the economy will improve. But years of energy neglect have finally caught up with us.

The good news is that the USA is now being forced to change from fossil fuel to alternatives. Once that happens, America will be the stronger for it.

Overseas the U.S. military has almost single-handedly defeated Islamic fascism in Iraq, a stunning achievement in one of the most complex battlefields in history. The media has severely downplayed this, but after years of struggle, America is now winning that vicious war and has decimated the Al Qaeda offensive in Iraq.

In Afghanistan, NATO forces route the Taliban whenever there is a direct confrontation. It is only because Pakistan protects these monsters — allows them sanctuaries — that they continue to exist.

Back home there is a gap between the rich and poor in America, and that's because liberal policies have led the public education system to collapse in many places. Kids who can't speak well, who can barely read or write, cannot compete in the world economy.

But instead of demanding discipline and accountability in the schools, which would raise the skill levels, the left is screaming for income redistribution. That is, over-taxing the affluent and giving the money directly to the less well-off.

That, of course, sets up a giant welfare apparatus, like the one in France which has grossly damaged that country's economy.

"Talking Points" believes Americans who become educated can compete with anyone, anywhere. We are still a vibrant, hardworking country. We just need to fix the schools, not create a monstrous federal entitlement system.

So there you have it. A magnificent military winning on all fronts, a painful transition to better fuel, which will happen, and a population that is basically honest and decent.

America is not in decline. It remains the world's best hope.

And that's "The Memo."

Pinheads & Patriots

Liberal actor Tom Hanks is promoting a very worthy organization called Welcome Back Veterans.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My first week home was great.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They lifted me up on their shoulders.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The first week back, people just said thank you. They just said thank you.

TOM HANKS, ACTOR/ACTIVIST: A new generation of veterans is coming home. Make a difference for them at WelcomeBackVeterans.org.


For that, Mr. Hanks is a patriot.

On the pinhead front, welcome back, Rosie. We missed you.


ROSIE O'DONNELL, COMEDIAN: I hate Ann Coulter. And that (EXPLETIVE DELETED) is annoying, let me tell you right now. And speaking of annoying, remember "The View"? Do you get it here in Canada? It was a cute little tea party show with the ladies, turned into a women's prison film.


Do you sense some bitterness there? Could be a pinhead involved.

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