The O'Reilly Factor
A daily summary of segments aired on The O'Reilly Factor. A preview of the evening's rundown is posted before the show airs each weeknight.
Thursday, July 22, 2010
The Factor Rundown
Talking Points Memo & Top Story
Impact Segment
Culture Warriors Segment
Kelly File Segment
Back of Book Segment
Factor Mail
Pinheads and Patriots
Get the book free when you become a Premium Member. Join up today!
Money, race and the media
"The Shirley Sherrod story is important on many levels. A week ago few had ever heard of Ms. Sherrod. Now she's in the middle of an intense White House and media controversy. It looks like Ms. Sherrod got hosed. But then the story took yet another turn. As you may know, NBC news has become the most liberal TV news organization in history, thanks to its cable news arm. Steve Capus is the president of NBC News. Mr. Capus has no problem allowing his personnel to wage dishonest personal attacks against pretty much anyone -- a major violation of journalistic ethics. Well, after the Sherrod case was exposed, NBC News, along with some other far-left enterprises, blamed the whole thing on Fox News, saying that we ginned up the story to make blacks look bad. One NBC News loon actually said on the air that the coverage of ACORN, the Black Panthers and Sherrod was designed to make white Americans scared of black Americans. Who is sponsoring this stuff? Mad Magazine? But as it turns out, Fox News was actually cautious when the Sherrod story broke. FNC hard news chief Michael Clemente wrote a memo stating 'Let's take our time and get the facts straight on this story. Can we get confirmation and comments from Sherrod before going on-air. Let's make sure we do this right.' Does that sound like a conspiracy to harm black americans to you? The bottom line is Ms. Sherrod deserves to be treated fairly by the media. But so does Fox News. NBC News is getting crushed by FNC. And that means they lose millions of dollars every quarter in revenue. That's why Capus and his character assassins do what they do. If you can't beat them, slime them."

For more on the top story, The Factor brought in Niger Innis, the national spokesman for the Congress of Racial Equality and Fox News analyst Tamara Holder. The Factor pointed out that Sherrod had been offered another job with the USDA, so the wrong against her has been righted. However, he said, the wrong against FOX News has not yet been righted. Tamara said that he shouldn't expect anyone to apologize to Fox. The Factor was surprised by that statement: "I can't? Why can't I expect fairness in the media?" "Because you're not going to get it," Tamara replied. Innis chimed in with an anecdote about the Tea Party Federation, which sent a letter to a prominent member of congress insisting that they denounce racism. "They have yet to get a response from Barbara Lee in the Congressional Black Caucus," Innis revealed.

For more on the Sherrod Story, radio talk show host Laura Ingraham joined the show. The Factor pointed out that Ingraham had denounced Sherrod when the tape first surfaced. Ingraham said that it was the Obama administration's fault for jumping the gun. "I should have read the whole thing too. But I thought the White House would never have moved against her unless it had competently reviewed the transcript." Ingraham also said that the Obama administration had actually hurt America's racial dialogue: "I believe much of what's been done in this administration, unfortunately, has set back race relations in this country, perhaps a generation. I predicted that would happen a year ago on my radio show. And I stand by that today." The Factor saw one bright point for the president in the whole mess, praising him for calling Sherrod on the phone: "It was a classy thing to do. If I were the president, I would have called her, too. In fact, we tried to call her, but we can't find here because CNN has her tied up."
Shirley Sherrod talks to President Obama
President Obama spoke with Shirley Sherrod on the phone Thursday. Fox News correspondent James Rosen and Chief White House Correspondent Major Garrett had details of the encounter. Garrett explained that Obama almost had no choice but to call: "The president was hard pressed not to call her. And he expressed not only his personal apology, but said that the Agriculture Secretary, who was behind all of this, Tom Vilsack, was sincere in his apology." The Factor pointed out that the story was evolving: "It has now become a media war story. They've taken it away from the Agriculture Department and the White House and turned it on its head -- now it's all FOX News' fault." Rosen defended FNC's coverage: "That's one myth, the idea that Fox News was the catalyzing agent in this, when in fact Ms. Sherrod had resigned long before the first segments on this channel started to run about this story."
Groups urging action against BP
A new ad from a group that wants to clean up the Gulf oil spill features children saying the F-word. Culture Warriors Margaret Hoover and Courtney Friel -- in for Gretchen Carlson -- were on the case. Hoover had been doing some investigating, and it turns out the organization wasn't just giving money to Gulf clean-up charities: "They're not all going to help clean up the Gulf Coast either. One of them is Greenpeace. And the whole point of donating to Greenpeace is because they'll stop offshore drilling." On the issue of the kids saying the F-word, Friel pointed out that the parents were apparently okay with it: "The parents all gave permission, and they were on set." Hoover said that the kids cursing didn't bother her in the end: "At first I was offended, and then I realized it was a big joke. And I laughed. It was funny." The Factor didn't think it was appropriate for the children to be saying things like that: "I would not let my 9-year-old do that. No way."
Shirley Sherrod and the Hatch Act
There's a law called the Hatch Act that prohibits federal employees from politicking while on the job. The Factor asked Fox anchor Megyn Kelly if Ms. Sherrod violated the act when she criticized Pres. Bush at an NAACP event. "I say no," Kelly began. "The Hatch Act basically prohibits federal employees from engaging in political activity while on duty. So was she on duty here? No, she was at an NAACP event." The Factor was worried that even if she didn't violate the letter of the law, her personal views would get in the way of her job: "How can she possibly do the people's business when there are a lot of Republican farmers who would like aid from her? They might be intimidated to ask, because they know where she's coming from." Kelly conceded that might be the case, but said Sherrod's personal feelings didn't matter, as far as the law is concerned: "Just because you become a government official doesn't mean you sacrifice your First Amendment right. You are allowed to have opinions."
Great American News Quiz
Martha MacCallum and Steve Doocy battled it out again to prove who had the most mastery over the week's news. Among the questions: "Which US president established the USDA?" "Which Las Vegas legend is supporting Harry Reid's reelection bid?" and "How many days did Lindsay Lohan's pal Paris Hilton spend in jail?" Doocy just narrowly edged out MacCallum, 3 to 2, and claimed the prize for a lucky Factor viewer.
Viewers sound off
Factor Words of the Day
Phil Westover, Sherwood, Oregon: "Bill, I became a Premium Member because of your interview with Megyn Kelly. That alone is worth the price of admission. Thanks for the interview!"

Mike Monseur, Springfield, Illinois: "Bill, I watched to see how you would handle the Sherrod story and I was blown off my couch when I heard your talking points. I agree there is more to this story than meets the eye. Thanks for being honest."

Tyler Parker, Ames, Iowa: "Bill, thanks for apologizing to Ms. Sherrod. She has a world view different from yours because her experiences have been different. I hope you appreciate this."

Rick Gray, Newark, Delaware: "Mr. O, I respect your apology to Ms. Sherrod. While some are gleeful over your mistake, in the end you got the story right."

Andrea Dobson, Aurora, Indiana: "I hate the taste of beer but find Miller Time to be very refreshing."
Macy's & the whale
Thursdays Patriots: The Macy's company, and everyone who participated in the Macy's Soldier Ride, which benefits the Wounded Warrior Project. Macy's CEO CEO Terry Lundgren, and actors Matthew Modine and Tony Sirico were on hand Thursday morning to help kick off the race, along with The Factor. And the Pinhead: The 40 ton whale in South Africa who was captured on film jumping out of the water and crushing a sailboat.