To watch "The Talking Points Memo" in the Screening Room click here.

Hi, I'm Bill O'Reilly.  Thank you for watching us tonight.

Jimmy Carter and the Iraq situation.  That is the subject of this evening's Talking Points Memo.

I've had occasional dealings with Mr. Carter.  I respect him with his work with Habitat for Humanity.  But I feel he's naive and idealistic in a dangerous world.

Many historians rank him near the bottom of presidents because, on his watch, a vicious recession gripped America, Iran humiliated us by taking 66 Americans hostage, and a failed rescue attempt embarrassed the USA.  Gas shortages racked the country and the Soviets invaded Afghanistan, causing Carter to order a boycott of the 1980 summer Olympic games in Moscow.

Obviously, Jimmy Carter had a rough ride as president, although he did succeed in lessening tensions between Israel and the Palestinians for a brief time.

After his public service, Carter became a minister without portfolio.  President Clinton sent him to help on the North Korea situation.  Obviously, that didn't work out, as the North Koreans cheated on the deal.

And then Carter went to help in Haiti, another multi-million dollar failure.

Mr. Carter is a man of peace, no doubt.  But not a man who can neutralize America's enemies.

He was adamantly against the first Gulf War and urging the U.N. not to back it.  Now the former president has again lined up with the forces that want to keep Saddam Hussein in power, because only war will remove him.

What should we all think of this?  While Mr. Clinton generally supports removing Saddam by force, Carter lends his name to those who are hammering America, giving aid and comfort to Saddam at the same time.

To me, this is embarrassing.  Former presidents of the United States have always had an unwritten code they would not intrude on policy once they finished their terms.

Even at the height of the Clinton impeachment, the former presidents kept silent.  Gerald Ford told me he wanted to speak out but simply could not because of the code.

Jimmy Carter has a right to his opinion, of course.  But does he have the right to make things more difficult for President Bush?  As an American, the answer is yes.  As a former president, the answer is no.

Carter is hurting this country by giving a foreign newspaper, London's "Daily Mirror," another reason to criticize America.  The "Mirror" is trumpeting that Carter is against the war and Mr. Bush.

What Jimmy Carter should do is privately give Mr. Bush his opinion and shut up publicly.  That would be best for the country.

But Carter has a huge ego, enormous, and I believe he enjoys the spotlight.  However, that light has now blinded him.  Jimmy Carter is making yet another mistake, and this time there is no excuse for it.

And that's the memo.

And that's The Memo .

The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day

Time now for "The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day"...

Those zany guys at Mad TV are at it again.  The program runs on the FOX network on Saturday nights, and they love to skewer us.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  When guests come on The Factor, they can expect to be challenged by your humble correspondent.  The problem is that none of these nitwits are able to hold up their end of the debate.  The result: I win every argument every time.

Now "Talking Points," which is me, believes that this is because I am a genius who has been everyplace and done everything ever known to mankind.  I have held every job, and I have lived in every city on the planet.  I have time traveled.  I have space traveled.  I have even been a woman.

In short, I know everything there is to know, and I've known it first.


Shouldn't I get paid for this?  I mean, these kids are making a living off me.  Ridiculous?  You make the call.

— You can watch Bill O'Reilly's Talking Points Memo and "Most Ridiculous Item" weeknights at 8 & 11p.m. ET on the Fox News Channel. Send your comments to: oreilly@foxnews.com