A Cautious Man
July 21, 2004
 
Some Hazard From Harvard ...
I got home last evening, and inexplicably clicked on "Fox News" for the start of Bill O'Reilly's program (By the way, did he ever tell you about his MPA from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government? That seems to come up a lot). From his introductory Talking Points, I learned that "It's war between FOX News and 'The New York Times.' " After a litany of past slights, Mr. O'Reilly informs us that the "last straw" was apparently A.O. Scott's favorable review of the film "Outfoxed". And by "favorable", of course, we mean that the review was unfavorable to Mr. O'Reilly:
Scott doesn't care about fairness. He simply wants to demonize FOX News.

For example, he puts forth that a man named Jeremy Glick was the victim of a "belligerent, boorish interview by me," your humble correspondent. Glick, whose father was killed at the World Trade Center, is described by Scott as someone "who came to oppose the administration's military response to 9/11." Scott makes the man seem very sympathetic. But who is this guy, really? Well, on this program, Glick said President Bush and his father were responsible for his father's death. He said George W. Bush pulled off a coup to get elected. He implied the USA itself was a terrorist nation. And he called his father's death at the hands of Al Qaeda "alleged assassination." He said America itself was responsible for the 9/11 attack because it is an imperialistic, aggressive nation. Glick was dismissed from The Factor because he was completely off the wall. Security actually had to take the guy out of the building, he was that out of control.

Now, the funny thing is, Mr. O'Reilly didn't actually replay the interview in question (a la "We Report, You Decide"). By poking around the web, I found several (albeit partisan) sites with the transcript (for example, here, here and here), and even a place to download the video (here). Maybe A.O. Scott was referring to portions of the exchange, such as:
O'Reilly: Man, I hope your mom isn't watching this.

Glick: Well, I hope she is.

O'Reilly: I hope your mother is not watching this because you -- that's it. I'm not going to say anymore.

Glick: OK.

O'Reilly: In respect for your father...

Glick: On September 14, do you want to know what I'm doing?

O'Reilly: Shut up. Shut up.

As to whether Mr. Glick was so "completely off the wall" that "[s]ecurity actually had to take the guy out of the building, he was that out of control", you can judge for yourself from the transcript or the video.

Mr. O'Reilly closed last night's Talking Points essay with the following:
So enough's enough. And I am issuing this challenge directly to "The New York Times." I will debate any "Times" editor or columnist on the Charlie Rose PBS program. I talked with Mr. Rose this morning. He's happy to moderate such an event. So I'm calling these sleazy guys out. We'll let you know what happens. Do you think they'll show up? Yes, sure...
I hope someone from the Times does show up. But, only on the condition that, before the debate, the viewing audience is shown a replay of the Jeremy Glick interview in its entirety. You know, "no spin" and all that?

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