Spoken Like A Politician: Dobbs Skirts O’Reilly On Political Plans Question

Picture 2In addition to fighting for candy canes everywhere, Bill O’Reilly used Friday’s edition of the Factor for a little sit down with ex-CNN anchor and political hopeful Lou Dobbs. Without dithering, O’Reilly mentioned Dobbs’ aspirations for either a senate run from New Jersey or even a full-scale presidential campaign, forgoing the obvious “Will you run?” question in favor of a more meaty query. Unfortunately, what he got in return was all fat — low on substance, but full of political grease.

“What would be the main thing you would want to accomplish were you elected to high office?” O’Reilly asked, fairly.

“The first thing I would want to accomplish, and I would want any candidate whom I supported to accomplish, would be to restore representation to the American people,” Dobbs responded. Note the definite vagueness implicit in the clause “…and I would want any candidate whom I supported to accomplish…” He continued to speak of a leader’s responsibility to “faithfully represent our foudning values and ideals.”

“The elites are turning a blind eye — turning their backs — to the very people who make this country work,” Dobbs continued. Then came the money moment:

“All right, so you’re gonna run as a populist guy,” O’Reilly quipped at the end of the clip. “I’m an independent,” said Dobbs with a smirk. “So am I,” said O’Reilly. So am I.

See it for yourself:

O’Reilly Reloads: Bill’s War On The “War On Christmas” Continues

Picture 6Dr. Jayne Gilmore, principal of Byam Elementary School — you ma’am, are in the crosshairs. Bill O’Reilly’s that is, as the host kicks off this holiday season with an old favorite: a fight against The War On Christmas. You see, Gilmore has a holiday gift room in her school, but has banned all signs of Christmas. (And Hanukkah.) So she’s an equal opportunity religion hater, basically, and “even Santa got the boot,” reported O’Reilly. That big bearded man’s probably an agnostic! And yet… not allowed. Sounds like a job for O’Reilly’s go-to ambush associate extraordinaire, the unfaltering Jesse Watters a.k.a. Santa’s Little Helper.

“Why are you trying to ruin Christmas for the children?” Watters asks the school committee chair in the parking lot. And the camera’s shaky so you know it’s legit. “We’re just trying to help out the kids,” he pleads to the police.

Then, O’Reilly welcomes Watters to the show to explain just what went down in Godlessville, USA. “They feel like the athiest children are going to be offended and feel left out,” he explains. It’s a nice big laugh all round, so pour yourself some eggnog, sprinkle that cinnamon powder and enjoy the show. Hold the rum for now, because no matter which side of this story you’re on, you’ll need it after watching the clip. Add to taste.

The War on Christmas Is Back! O’Reilly Takes on “Anti-God” Ads

Screen shot 2009-12-03 at 9.12.10 PMEvery so often, we can really see why so many people tune into Bill O’Reilly every night. He can be engaging and charming and has a sense of humor — which, despite whatever outrage he’s fomented about the so-called “War on Christmas” in the past, was clearly on display tonight as he returned to that favorite topic. Tonight, O’Reilly zeroed in on “anti-God” ads by the
The American Humanist Society. That may be a bit of an exaggeration, since the ads are less anti-God than pro-atheism (the tagline is “No God? No Problem!” with a kicker of “Be Good For Goodness Sake!”), but atheism certainly isn’t pro-God, so it does make sense. O’Reilly seems more amused than perturbed by it, and maybe even seems to be spoofing the usual umbrage just a little.

O’Reilly welcomed Gretchen Carlson and Margaret Hoover to discuss the issue, and while Hoover seemed just as amused as O’Reilly, Carlson definitely took offense (”This is a direct and deliberate smear against Christianity”). Here’s where we’re sure O’Reilly was just having fun with her: “Why do they loathe the Baby Jesus? He’s just a baby!” Carlson maintained that they are trying to capitalize on the growing ranks of atheists, but O’Reilly wasn’t convinced: “How do you sell atheism by running down a baby?”

O’Reilly had a theory about the reason for the ads: Jealousy. “What do atheists have in December, the latest Bill Maher special?” At this point someone off-camera laughed, and you had to know that no one thought he was serious. Except, maybe Carlson: “Oh, please, you don’t think atheists exchange presents with one another? They just don’t have Jesus!” This is a highly enjoyable segment about some fairly obnoxious ads, and I enjoyed it greatly. Watch below:

Career Daily Show watchers will recall that Jon Stewart took on O’Reilly’s “War on Christmas” mongering back in 2005 (after O’Reilly complained that it was part of a “secular progressive agenda” — a phrase that he was popularizing on his show well before the publication of his book, Culture Warrior, in fall 2006, that officially coined and used that phrase). Stewart’s choice rejoinder is below. Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays! God bless us, every one!

p.s. Congratulations to the lovely Margaret Hoover on her marriage!

Bill O’Reilly Forgets He’s ‘Doing It Live’

OBAMA_OSAMAAnother Fox Newser made the Obama/Osama mistake last night – their top host, Bill O’Reilly.

But O’Reilly didn’t bother to correct it at the time – because he forgot his show was live last night. Ouch.

Spud over at InsideCableNews caught the mistake last night, made during O’Reilly’s live O’Reilly Factor show at 9pmET, following Pres. Obama’s address. Normally, O’Reilly pre-tapes his show a couple hours before 8pmET, but last night he was, to paraphrase one of his most infamous moments, ‘doing it live.’

While teasing Rep. Maurice Hinchey’s recent remarks about Pres. Bush letting Osama bin Laden escape, on purpose, O’Reilly said:

Pinheads and patriots, on deck, tonight starring a Congressman who says, you’re never going to believe it, Pres. Bush allowed Obam…uh…Osama…I’m going to have to cut that again.

Sorry Bill, no you’re not.

Here’s the clip:

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Bill O’Reilly on Obama’s Speech: “Not Exactly The Gettysburg Address”

OReilly_Obama_GettysburgPresident Obama addressed the nation tonight regarding his plans for the war in Afghanistan, cautioning that “the days of providing a blank check are over,” and that going forward “we will be clear about what we expect from those who receive our assistance.” Shortly after, Bill O’Reilly hosted a live version of The Factor, and criticized the president for not providing a “Winston Churchill moment.” Also, O’Reilly made clear that this was “no exactly the Gettysburg address.” Tough crowd.

In fairness to O’Reilly, he wasn’t completely negative towards Obama, but he seemed to have it both ways. He agreed with the President on some material points of his speech, but took exception to his lack of passion and energy behind the speech.

Echo Chamber of Secrets: 30 Media Muggles and their Harry Potter Counterparts

Picture 1It’s no secret that grown-ups love the Harry Potter series almost as much as kids – maybe even more, based on certain grown-up references that the average 12-year-old can’t quite yet appreciate. More to the point, by this time a whole bunch of Harry Potter fans who were once kids, back when the book came out, are now all grown up. Either way, that means a whole lot of us at Mediaite are unashamed, unabashed Harry Potter fans. After its worldwide record-breaking weekend (which a few of us contributed to), we got to talking about certain parallels between the magical land of Hogwarts and the equally magical land of headlines, bylines, cutlines, chyrons, blog pickup and declining ad pages. Turns out, the two have a lot in common! Before we knew it, we were shouting out names of media muggles like Hermione answering a pop quiz. After careful (and nerdily meticulous) consideration, we’ve come up with a few examples for you. (We like to think of the Power Grid as our own little version of the Marauder’s Map.) Here below, for your edification and enjoyment, is our own version – let’s call it “Harry Potter and the Media Muggles.” Mischief managed!


Conan O’Brien: Ron Weasley


We’ve watched gangly, lovable Ron grow up before our eyes – and so, too, have we watched gangly, lovable Conan do the same thing as he moved up a time slot into Leno’s growed-up shoes. Also, there’s the red-headed thing. If only he could perform an Engorgio! spell on the ratings.

Campbell Brown: Hermione Granger

campbellbrown hermione

Campbell Brown recently declared that CNN was the only network “doing journalism” – that reminded us of Hermione scolding Harry that he wasn’t following directions from his potions book correctly. Still, you don’t become a star pupil – or a star anchor – for nothing; it requires brains and hard work. No-nonsense in the library, intrepid on the field of battle – Hermione and Brown have those things in common. Plus, if we may say, a rather adorable button nose.

Bill O’Reilly: Draco Malfoy


Who’s the biggest troublemaker at Hogwarts? Draco Malfoy, Harry’s arch-nemesis and the school bully, throwing taunts and barbs and challenging his enemies. He’s a leader, a lightning rod, and the prime symbol of the Slytherin message. Sort of sounds like – Bill O’Reilly, whose show leads Fox News to ratings dominance, and he’s never been shy about throwing punches. Of course, the top bully needs henchman, so who better than…

Glenn Beck: Crabbe


Keith Olbermann: Goyle


Crabbe & Goyle don’t say much in the Harry Potter books, so in that respect they’re dissimilar to Glenn Beck and Keith Olbermann, who never met a subject they couldn’t formulate an impassioned opinion about. However, in terms of raw henchman-y power, they both provide twin support for the O’Reilly model, on the left and the right. Bill O’Reilly chose the weapon – the blunt instrument of bloviation – and they have both learned to wield that weapon to carve out a spot in emulation of their leader. Also, Olbermann is huge. That helps when you’re a henchman.

Graydon Carter: Lucius Malfoy


We’re not saying the editor of Vanity Fair is evil, exactly – we’ll leave that to Toby Young. But you can’t deny certain similarities between Graydon Carter and Lucius Malfoy, the imperious, imposing figure at the top of publishing/wizarding society. Like secret meetings at Borgin & Burkes, Carter’s Waverly Inn only admits the invited few; if you’re of mere Muggle stock, you might as well not bother.

Malcolm Gladwell: Professor Trelawney


Brainy, cerebral, casting your mind out to the universe to divine the secret interweaving patterns that determine the behavior of those around them – sounds like Malcolm Gladwell found a mind-mate in the all-seeing Sybil Trelawney. Also, there’s the hair.

Arianna Huffington: Bellatrix Lestrange



Like Voldemort’s top lieutenant, Arianna Huffington is skilled, sexy, and widely feared. Only instead of stealing prophecy orbs she (arguably) steals other people’s content. Please don’t Crucio us, Arianna.

p.s. Both are by far the most likely on this list to make a “wandworkjoke.

Chris Matthews: Mad-Eye Moody


He barks. He blurts. He sometimes seems a little nuts. Need we say more?

Anderson Cooper: Fleur Delacour


That silvery hair…those bewitching eyes…how could you not be transfixed? This is what Fleur Delacour and Anderson Cooper have in common. Yes yes, they’re both very accomplished – she competed for Beauxbatons in the Triwizard Tournament, he is a cornerstone of CNN’s primetime – but really, they’re just both so pretty.


Bill O’Reilly Meets His Puppet Counterpart – Fairness And Balance Ensues

oscar_11-25In the wake of Sesame Street’s joking jab at Fox News (having Oscar the Grouch get a suggestion to watch “Pox News…a trashy news show”), Bill O’Reilly invited Sherrie Westin, EVP of Sesame Workshop, on for an edited segment to defend Sesame Street.

But someone else stopped by as well for his TV debut – “Spill O’Reilly.”

“Pox News? It’s outrageous,” said O’Reilly, although it was clear he was at least half-kidding. “Oh Bill. We do parodies on Sesame Street, but they’re done for a reason,” said Westin, who is also the wife of ABC News President David Westin. “If you looked at that whole parody, for Oscar, the highest praise is being trashy.”

“So he was actually praising Fox News,” said O’Reilly.

Westin also introduced the newest anchor on the “Grouch News Network,” joining the illustrious company of Walter Cranky and Dan Rather-not: Spill O’Reilly.

“Welcome to the no-spew zone, I’m Spill O’Reilly,” begin the puppet. “We are fair and balanced, completely non-partisan. You want to know the truth about us grouches, this is it. We can’t stand anybody!”

O’Reilly got serious at the end of the segment. “By the way, Sesame Street celebrating 40 years on the air, so congratulations to them, it is a very worthy enterprise,” he said.

Here’s the full segment – check out the self-promotion Spill O’Reilly has picked up from his FNC host counterpart:

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