It was a tie. Both candidates stuck to their positions, neither rattled the other, and there was plenty of SOS, same old stuff.

Of course, the tie helps Obama because McCain has been hurt by the brutal economy and he needed to lift himself up big time Tuesday night. But the senator did not tap into the anger of the folks as "Talking Points" suggested he do. In fact, both candidates were strangely detached from the suffering that is going on in America.


BARACK OBAMA: It means that we are cracking down on CEOs and making sure that they're not getting bonuses or golden parachutes as a consequence of this package. And in fact, we just found out that AIG, a company that got a bailout, just a week after they got help went on a $400,000 junket. And I tell you what, the Treasury should demand that money back, and those executives should be fired.

JOHN MCCAIN: And you know, there were some of us that stood up two years ago and said we've got to enact legislation to fix this, we've got to stop this greed and excess. Meanwhile, the Democrats in the Senate and some members of Congress defended what Fannie and Freddie were doing.


I didn't see the passion in either of those statements. On paper, things look dim for John McCain. But I remember when most pundits, including me, left him for dead in the Republican race. McCain is a fighter, so I can't count him out right now. But now the winds have shifted Obama's way, no doubt.

Both Obama and McCain are conventional politicians at a time when we need a crusader for justice, not a traditional political dealmaker. Hardworking Americans are furious and feel powerless in the face of this economic crisis. Not since 9/11 has the country been so angry.

So why aren't McCain and Obama angry? I am. You probably are. But they don't seem to be. Maybe it's because they were both caught by surprise. Certainly there was no hint of economic chaos at the conventions just a few weeks ago. Whatever, there was little passion on the economic issue Tuesday night.

"Talking Points" believes the economy will snap back in a big way. But in the meantime, there will be much suffering. So what we are going to do here is spotlight those people who could have prevented this mess but did not. You saw our first salvo with Barney Frank. There's another one coming Thursday.

Now I don't think Obama or McCain had much to do with the economic crisis. But now they must begin to understand the pain many Americans are feeling. The entire landscape of America has changed in just three weeks. Obama and McCain should get in touch with it.

And that's "The Memo."

Pinheads & Patriots

It's hard enough raising teenagers in this high-tech age, but raising a teen superstar must really be a challenge. Apparently, 16-year-old Miley Cyrus went on a spending spree with credit cards, and her mom did not take to that.

Click here to watch "Pinheads & Patriots."


TISH CYRUS, MILEY CYRUS' MOTHER: She's had a credit card, and she went a little over her limit the other day, and I was like no more credit card for six months.


Good for her. For imposing that discipline, Tish Cyrus is a patriot.

On the pinhead front, our pal Madonna just can't stop herself.


MADONNA, POP STAR: Thank you for coming to my party. You know who's not invited to my party? Sarah (EXPLETIVE DELETED) Palin. She's not invited to the show. Sarah Palin has to go. She's not invited to any show. So get the (EXPLETIVE DELETED) out of here.


Remember, folks paid a lot of money to hear that bilge. So for imposing her personal views on a concert audience, Madonna is a pinhead.

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