[sociate] O'Reilly on Fresh Air

  • From: "Jerry Michalski" <jerry@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "Sociate News" <sociate@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 9 Oct 2003 18:05:03 -0400

Listening to the Terry Gross interview of Bill O'Reilly (link courtesy of
Heather Brown) prompted a few mixed reactions:
  a.. I had heard Terry's earlier interview of Al Franken. It had me
rolling, but Terry was definitely easier on Al than on Bill. Score one for

  b.. I interpret Fox News and O'Reilly's high ratings as evidence that
people watching are fed up with mamby-pamby even-handedness; they just want
people to take strong stances on important issues. Grey is out. Black or
white is in.

  c.. Unfortunately, when people hear two points of view, they average: They
tend to think the truth lies somewhere in the middle. O'Reilly has every
right to his opinions, but commentators at the other end of the spectrum
aren't out that far, so the "truth" gets moved to the Right.

  d.. I'm fascinated (and frightened) by how O'Reilly and others use the
very arguments you could easily make against them to neutralize their
opponents. O'Reilly calling Franken and New York Times movie/book reviewer
Janet Maslin character assassins, even as he assassinates their characters.
That takes balls.

  e.. Man, O'Reilly is a slippery weasel.

  f.. So how do we interact with people like O'Reilly in a civil fashion?
What O'Reilly is doing is somehow very dangerous. It's brutality posing as
fairness, fact-finding and civility.

posted by Jerry Michalski at 5:52 PM

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