Robert Reich vs O'Reilly & Tim Graham

BILL O'REILLY, HOST: In the Personal Story segment tonight, as you may know, the FOX News Channel overwhelmed CNN in the ratings during the Iraq war. That isn't sitting too well with CNN honcho Ted Turner who last night in San Francisco said this.

TED TURNER, CNN FOUNDER: You know, just because your ratings are bigger doesn't mean you're better either. Ratings are -- all that gives you is the size of the audience. You know, it's not how big you are. It's how good you are that really counts.

O'REILLY: All right. Mr. Turner also called Fox News executives warmongers. Now my take on this is that Mr. Turner is extremely frustrated because Americans are watching us instead of his operation, but, as always, I could be wrong.

With us now here in Boston, former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich and, from Washington, Tim Graham the director of media analysis at the Media Research Center, a conservative group.

OK, Tim. We'll start with you. How do you see the Turner situation?

TIM GRAHAM, MEDIA RESEARCH CENTER: Well, obviously this is a guy who doesn't know good journalism.

This is a guy who put Peter Jennings -- or put Peter Arnett in Baghdad in 1991 to act as a sock puppet for Saddam Hussein. This is a guy who did personal interviews with Fidel Castro that were like a shoe-polish session. This is a guy who did a documentary on the Soviet Union in the 1980s that was so positive that the Soviet Union toned it down when they rebroadcast it.

So the idea that this guy knows what good, quality journalism is, and he knows it's not on FOX, it's on anything that he has ever been responsible for, really is a bit of a joke.

O'REILLY: All right. Mr. Reich, what say you?

ROBERT REICH, BRANDEIS UNIVERSITY PROFESSOR: Well, FOX is a right-wing station. You know that.

O'REILLY: Well, I'm not going to cede that.

REICH: I mean now come on, Bill.

O'REILLY: I mean you're not being specific...

REICH: It's a -- it's a right-wing station. Now, if you want to be opinionated and right-wing, that's your position, that's your privilege.

O'REILLY: Well, look, I mean when you say it's a right-wing station...

REICH: It's perfectly OK. Don't be defensive about it. It's OK.

O'REILLY: Listen, you can put out all the propaganda you want. You're an expert at that. You made a career out of it. But if you want to make an accusation like that...

REICH: Look who is talking. Now wait a minute.

O'REILLY: ... you're going to have to back it up.

REICH: OK. Let me do an experiment where. Where do you disagree with the Bush administration?

O'REILLY: Many things. Environment, number one, heads the list.

REICH: Well, wait a minute. How about -- how about the big things -- like Iraq, foreign policy...

O'REILLY: Now wait a minute. I just -- I just answered your question.

REICH: ... economic policy.

O'REILLY: I just answered your question. There are many differences that I have with the Bush administration, but let's keep it to the war coverage because that's what this is all about.

I submit to you the reason that we beat CNN so badly in this war was because we were right. Our analysis was right. Our reporters were good. They didn't make mistakes. Our guys were better than their guys. And what say you about that?


NOTE: O'Reilly claims the Fox news analysis was right on the Iraq war. I can prove they were wrong on a lot of their analysis. Not to mention Col. Maginnis said on a scale of 1 to 10 (The O'Reilly Factor, 4-22-03) it's a 10 they would find WMD's in Iraq within 30 days. That was 60 days ago, and they still have not found any WMD's in Iraq. O'Reilly promised to do a follow up show in 30 days, he said if they have not found any WMD's by then he would apologize to the nation, and he would say we can't trust the Bush administration. It is now roughly 60 days later, no follow up show has ever been done with Mr. (10 on a scale of 1 to 10) Col. Maginnis. Geraldo (Fox News) drew a map of troop movements, then the US Government threw him out of Iraq. I guess O'Reilly don't consider that a mistake, I sure as hell do.

Read this article:

Fibbing It Up at Fox


REICH: Bill, I'll tell you why. A lot of people are watching Fox, and I like Fox. I like appearing with you, and I like you personally, but it -- the reason is people like opinionated journalism. They like it where there's a kind of provocation...

O'REILLY: Yes, that's what we do at night.

REICH: ... where there's a little bit of ridicule. I mean that's why people listen to Rush Limbaugh, that's why they listen to right-wing radio...

O'REILLY: That's no comparison.

REICH: ... and that's why they listen to right-wing television. Now that's -- again, they like it because it's entertaining, and you mix entertainment with news, and that's perfectly fine. But that's why you're beating CNN, and that's why you're beating a lot of...

O'REILLY: That's not why.

GRAHAM: Bill...

O'REILLY: Our hard news coverage goes...

GRAHAM: Bill...

O'REILLY: Wait a minute. I'll get -- I'll get back to you in a moment, Tim.

Our hard news coverage goes from 9:00 in the morning until 6:00 at night when Hume comes on, OK, and during that time -- and I know you're teaching or spreading propaganda around Boston, whatever you do during the day -- the embedded reporters, the military experts, all of those people come in, and they report. And then once Hume comes on -- and then we start the cycle, but 7:00 to 8:00 is a hard news broadcast with Shepard Smith. Then you have your news analysis.

Now, granted, we have some conservatives on it, but we have some liberals as well. You know all this. But I'm submitting to you that our reportage and our analysis was correct, and that's why people came into the Fox News Channel. Granted, there are some conservatives who watch us and have an allegiance to us. Sure. But not to the extent that we rolled over CNN.

REICH: Here's what bothers me.

GRAHAM: The real...

O'REILLY: All right. Tim, you go ahead.

GRAHAM: The real fallacy here in Mr. Reich's argument -- and it's in a lot of liberals' arguments -- is the idea that the only biased media outlet in the United States is the FOX News Channel.

I remember NBC Anchor Tom Brokaw doing a very entertaining opinion segment -- oh, it was in a newscast -- praising Secretary Reich and his marvelous book.

He called the treasury secretary during the Clinton years the best treasury secretary ever, but Bob Reich wants to pretend there's no opinion anywhere else on television.

REICH: Well, Tim, let me just say MSNBC is also trying to outfox Fox these days with Michael Savage and with Scarborough. It's all the trend, and that's perfectly fine.

Your organization is financed, I believe, by Richard Mellon Scaife and...

GRAHAM: Among others.

REICH: Well, yes, and they're all right-wingers, and you are a conservative foundation.

O'REILLY: Oh, come no.

REICH: I believe in the...

O'REILLY: But this is where the left-wingers...

REICH: I believe in the marketplace of ideas, and the thing that worries...

O'REILLY: But there is just as opinion...

REICH: But here -- but here's what...

O'REILLY: No, no, no, but you're -- you're missing the point.

REICH: Here's what worries me.

O'REILLY: You're missing the point a little bit, too.

REICH: But I have a worry.

O'REILLY: All right. Well, you're going to have to keep quiet because it's my show.

REICH: You see. That's what I'm talking about.

O'REILLY: Well, if you were...

REICH: You are opinionated. It's your show. If you want to get off the hook, Fox...

O'REILLY: Listen, if you get to be...

REICH: If Fox wants to get...

O'REILLY: If you get to be as smart and as talented as me, you'll have a show. That won't happen.

REICH: If Fox -- if Fox wants to get off the hook, make me a host. I'm opinionated.

O'REILLY: All right. Here it is. We've got two minutes left. I'm going to give you a minute, and I'm going to give Tim a minute. The crux of this matter is that it's propaganda for Ted Turner to go on and say, oh, we don't care about ratings. We're much better. They're not better.

CNN had a lot of faulty analysis. They had generals come on and say the war plan was bad. The war plan wasn't bad. They said there was fierce resistance. There wasn't fierce resistance. They said the casualties were going to be sky high. They weren't sky high. They made mistakes. That's number one.

Number two, you have just as much liberal opinion in the mass media as you do conservative opinion.

REICH: Oh, that is not true at all.

O'REILLY: Sure. If you...

REICH: Bill O'Reilly!

O'REILLY: Look, you have The Boston Globe, The New York Times...

REICH: They're not...

O'REILLY: ... The L.A. Times, The Washington Post...

REICH: Let's talk about broadcast media.

O'REILLY: All the networks...

REICH: Let's talk about broadcast media.

O'REILLY: All the networks...

REICH: All of the right-wing radio -- there is not a liberal radio host.


REICH: Baloney.



NOTE: Here is where O'Reilly totally loses all credibility. After watching this interview, I did some research on NPR. I found the local NPR station website and looked up their 24 hour program schedule. O'Reilly claims NPR is a liberal radio station that balances out the far right radio shows like Rush Limbaugh Sean Hannity, Michael Savage, and G. Gordon Liddy etc. Nothing could be further from the truth, it turns out NPR plays classical music about 18 hours a day, yes I said they play classical music 18 hours a day.

NPR goes on air at 5:00am, they have a show called Morning Edition, it runs for 4 hours from 5:00am to 9:00am. It's pretty much a straight news show, they read the news and do interviews once in a while. They don't have anyone who is anywhere close to the liberal equal of Rush or G. Gordon Liddy etc. From 9:00am to 4:00pm they run classical music. From 4:00pm to 6:00pm they have a show called All Things Considered. It's 2 hours of news, mostly generic reporters reading news copy, if they do an interview of someone, they usually have a person to represent the democrat and one to represent the republican. Even their news copy is balanced, whever they quote someone from the left on an issue, they also quote someone from the right to provide balance. On the other hand, Rush and G. Gordon Liddy rarely if ever let anyone from the left get on the show let alone quote them.

Then from 6:30pm to 5:00am the next morning NPR goes back to classical music. All but one half hour where they have a show called marketplace that runs from 6:00pm to 6:30pm.

Here is the link to the local NPR station: to see the schedule click on program guide on the left side of the page. To claim 18 hours of classical music is equal and a balance to Rush, G. Gordon Liddy, etc. is ridiclulous. During the day all we get on the radio here is right-wing hate radio. There is no liberal equal to the right-wingers on the radio, it sure is NOT NPR. Unless you think classical music is equal to Rush Limbaugh.

Here is one more item that proves NPR is not even close balance the right-wingers on the radio. This is from a pew research study taken on June 9, 2002.

Audience Ideology Profile:

Percent of people who regularly watch, read, or listen to:

NPR - Conservatives - 36% -- Moderates - 38% -- Liberals - 20%

If NPR is this mighty liberal radio station, how come 36% of conservatives listen to it, but only 20% of liberals do. How can it be a liberal radio station when more conservatives listen to it than liberals ? On the other hand, only 6% of liberals listen to Rush, and only 5% of liberals watch the O'Reilly Factor. For O'Reilly to claim a radio station that runs classical music 18 hours a day, and a station that has no far left show hosts like Rush or G. Gordon Liddy etc, and has 16% more conservative listeners than liberals, is pure insanity and flat out spin.


REICH: And what -- and what about television? What about television? Where are the liberal hosts? Where are the liberal hosts?

GRAHAM: You've got three politically correct...

O'REILLY: You've got NBC...

REICH: Come on. The mainstream is not...

O'REILLY: You've got PBS, Ted Koppel.

REICH: Here's what worries me. Here's what worries me. Here's what worries me.

O'REILLY: Real quick.

REICH: You've got a Republican president.


REICH: You've got Republicans in control of the House and Senate, and you have, arguably, Republicans in control of the Supreme Court. Now, if you also have a dominance in Republican opinion leaders in the media -- I'm not talking about newscasters who are on the major media. I'm talking about opinion leaders -- then you don't -- then you have one-sided...

O'REILLY: All right.

REICH: You don't have a real debate. You don't have a democracy, and that's the...

O'REILLY: Tim...

REICH: That's the fear.

O'REILLY: I think the doctor's hysterical, and I'm going to give you the last word. Go ahead.

GRAHAM: Well, I mean, Robert Reich had his own documentary series on PBS. So I paid his fee on that. We've got Bill Moyers on PBS every Friday night on with his propaganda.

The idea that we don't have liberal propaganda on 700 NPR affiliates, on 300 PBS stations, and on ABC, CBS, and NBC -- he's just not watching television or listening to the radio.


NOTE: This guy Tim Graham is from the totally right-wing biased MRC (Media Research Center) run by Brent Bozell III. It is a far right media watchdog group, they find bias in the media, the funny part is they can't find any conservative bias. They can only find Liberal bias, this is the guy O'Reilly uses to counter Robert Reich. A total right-wing shill for the republican party. Brent Bozell III is the Newt Gingrich of so-called media watchdog groups, and MRC is the heritage foundation of watchdog groups. They are so biased to the right, they have no credibility. Yet O'Reilly brings this guy Graham on and presents him as a credible source on media bias.

That alone shows how biased O'Reilly is, no respected journalist would ever use anyone from MRC to evaluate the bias in the media. The people at MRC think Fox news is the only objective news channel on tv. That is how biased they are, to believe that lie kills your credibility.

Now for NPR, Mr. Graham is spreading the same lie that O'Reilly put out. That the 700 NPR affiliates and ABC, NBC, CBS, are a balance to the right-wing hate radio and the right-wing cable news channels. This is ridiculous, let's start with NPR, Graham lies right off the bat. NPR does lean left, but they play classical music 18 hours a day. This is in no way a balance to Rush, etc. To even imply it is insane. What he calls Liberal propaganda, is called real news. These guys call any negative news about Bush or a republican propaganda. I would say 99% of it is true, they only call it propaganda to try to dis-credit it. Notice they never prove it is un-true, they just say it is. That 700 affiliates number is bogus, that includes Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa, military installations, and Japan. The actual number for america is about 500.

Moyers is on one night a week, Friday. And Friday is the least watched night for tv programs. Even with that he still averages a 2.3 rating, something the right-wingers never tell you. And Bill Moyers is the only far left show on PBS that even comes anywhere close to O'Reilly or Rush or Fox. On the contrary, O'Reilly is on an hour a night in primetime, and it's repeated two more times a night at 10:00pm and 3:00am. Rush is on the am dial 3 hours a day, 5 days a week. And before him G. Gordon Liddy is on for 3 hours. Then another right-winger does the 3 hours after Rush.

All during this time NPR is playing classical music, they play classical music from 9:00am to 6:00pm here in Peoria. It's like they are trying to force you to listen to the right-wing hate radio. The only other news is sports news talk. So you have 3 choices, listen to right-wing hate radio all day, listen to classical music all day, or listen to sports talk all day, that is a fact. NPR is not even close to a balance to right-wing hate radio.

Local NPR Programming Schedule:

Explain to me how that is a balance to Rush, G. Gordon Liddy, etc.

The mere fact that O'Reilly would book Tim Graham from MRC to be a source to prove Liberal bias in the media should tell you something right there. Outside the republican world, not one person gives MRC any credibility. It's the same as Fox claiming to be fair and balanced. MRC has a news service, it's called, the CNS stands for cybercast news service. The funny part is they changed that name from the original. It used to stand for Conservative News Service, they changed it when they started getting called biased. It's the same as when O'Reilly was caught registered as a republican, then he switched it to independent when everyone started calling him a biased conservative.

Check this out, this is a headline from 6-15-98:

MRC launches Conservative News Service

In the United States, Media Research Center (MRC) announced the web launch today of Conservative News Service "with the right news, right now".

The web browser bookmark for Conservative News Service is -

Now look what it's called today, notice the url is the same:

The Cybercast News Service was launched on June 16, 1998 as a news source for individuals, news organizations and broadcasters who put a higher premium on balance than spin and seek news thatís ignored or under-reported as a result of media bias by omission.

That is from their History page, not one mention of formerly being the conservative news service, and they now claim they are an objective and fair news service. Now that's funny, all they did was change the name and claim they are fair and balanced. What a scam, and this is the group O'Reilly uses for a source on media bias. Only a republican would use anyone from MRC or for anything.

This statement is funny: endeavors to fairly present all legitimate sides of a story and debunk popular, albeit incorrect, myths about cultural and policy issues. If you wrote this as a movie, they would laugh at you, and throw you out of the building.


REICH: Here's a good example. Two of you against one. Two of you against one.

O'REILLY: Well, that's because you're so much smarter than I am. I...


NOTE: That's funny, earlier in the interview O'Reilly told Mr. Reich if he were as smart as him he would have his own show, but that will never happen. Now he says the reason he did a 2 on 1 interview, with 2 conservatives against the one liberal, is because he is now suddenly smarter than him. I guess O'Reilly tells so many lies, he can't keep them all straight. One minute Reich is a dumb liberal who will never have a tv show, and the next minute he is so smart O'Reilly has to have help to interview him.


REICH: If this was -- if this was really a legitimate...

O'REILLY: ... had to have help.

REICH: ... balanced media, it would be one on one. This is ridiculous.

O'REILLY: Oh, I can't -- I can't -- you know I can't go up against you.

REICH: I prove my case. I prove my case.

O'REILLY: That's right. You're too smart for me. I had to have Tim to help me out.

All right, gentlemen. Thanks very much. We appreciate it.