Friday, January 06, 2006

Brought To You By Canned Ham

Call him cantankerous if you will. Call him only intermittently funny (as I'm inclined to).

But don't ever say that David Letterman doesn't have balls.

From A la Gauche:

Bill O'Reilly: "The soldiers and Marines are noble. They're not terrorists. And when people call them that, like Cindy Sheehan called the insurgents 'freedom fighters,' we don't like that. It is a vitally important time in American history. And we should all take it very seriously. Be very careful with what we say."

Letterman: Well, and you should be very careful with what you say also.

O'Reilly: Give me an example.

Letterman: How can you possibly take exception with the motivation and the position of someone like Cindy Sheehan?

O'Reilly: Because I think she's run by far-left elements in this country. I feel bad for the woman.

Letterman: Have you lost family members in armed conflict?

O'Reilly: No, I have not.

Letterman: Well, then you can hardly speak for her, can you?

You can practically hear Letterman bristling here, can't you? Click on the above link to read the whole enchilada. It's very...tense.

I know, I know..O'Reilly's an easy target, and Letterman's no political scientist. But I can't help a little malicious knife-twisting any more than...well...O'Reilly for that matter.


At 7:48 AM, Blogger Jabawacefti said...

I know you're not necessarily commenting on the merits of Letterman v. O'Reilly. And you're really just enjoying letting O'Reilly have it.

But let me, once again, explain why I think the whole, Cindy Sheehan as unassailable victim, is absurd.

Let's say, for example, my sister was killed by Jews (and neither she, me, nor the rest of my family, were Jews). And I'm upset. Naturally. So I come out and say, we must remove the Jews from the country. It's what I think would have prevented my sister from getting killed. And it technically would have.

God willing, I hope someone would criticize me. Both my motivation and position.

Well, but I'd say, your sister wasn't killed by Jews. You can't speak for me, can you? How can you question my grief? Until your family member is killed by Jews, don't talk to me.

Ok. I understand that there are grades of reasonableness of a position. And removing Jews from the country is an extreme example.

But the point is only this: One can accept the grief of an individual, while questioning a person's motivation and position. One's grief, apart from making their position more reasonable, is often motivated by emotion, and therein, sometimes less reasonable. And my purported desire to remove the Jews from the country shouldn't be less assailable because my position was spurred on by grief. Particularly if I then decided to use that grief to attract attention to my cause to have the Jews removed.

At 8:58 AM, Blogger codemorse said...

I understand. I think your example is a tad extreme, but I do understand.

You're right, I'm really just enjoying Letterman's holding O'Reilly's feet over the fire. I'm also inclined to agree with Letterman's unspoken, but quasi-implicit subtext.

While I think that you are correct, I also think that while you and I are free to judge the motivation and position of Ms. Sheehan, Mr. O'Reilly has made hay - and money - off his criticisms.

And I find that personally repugnant.

Of course, that is also aided by finding O'Reilly himself rather repugnant. I pride myself on admitting my own biases when they exist (as they too often do).

At 9:16 AM, Blogger codemorse said...

E.G. the repugnance of which I speak:

Bill O'Reilly: "The soldiers and Marines are noble. They're not terrorists. And when people call them that, like Cindy Sheehan called the insurgents 'freedom fighters,' we don't like that."

Well, I don't really like that either. But what I like less is O'Reilly's insinuation that Sheehan called American soldiers "terrorists," when - to the best of my knowledge - she's never said that.

So, once again, this post was more to whet my appetite for growling at O'Reilly, not defending Sheehan.

At 9:17 AM, Blogger Scott Roche said...

I find O'Reilly funny adn this exhange was also quite humorous. Hannity, O'reilly, and all the rest of the talking heads on tlak radio and talk tv (conservos or libbos) are entertainers not jouranlists. Too bad most people don't realize that (including the aforementioned talking heads).

At 10:26 AM, Blogger Jabawacefti said...

She did say that the insurgents were "freedom fighters," and this statement by Sheehan is I think to what O'Reilly may have been referring:

"Casey was killed in the Global War Of Terrorism waged on the world and its own citizens by the biggest terrorist outfit in the world: George and his destructive Neo-con cabal."

So, I guess the terrorists are George Bush and the Neo-Cons, and it's perhaps a stretch to say that the soldiers who fight at his order are terrorists as well. But that would be the argument, I imagine.

I don't know, I stopped taking O'Reilly seriously after he had Franken sued for libel. I can only imagine the associate who was tasked with dreaming up that Complaint, and I feel bad for him or her. At that point, O'Reilly lost whatever potential seriousness he might have had in my eyes.

But as a card carrying member of Bush's Neo-Con cabal, I can't figure whether I take O'Reilly or Sheehan less seriously.

At 10:53 AM, Blogger codemorse said...

Well put, Nizz. And thanks for the quote. That puts things in context for me.

Cap, while O'Reilly may be an entertainer, he's also an opinion-maker. People base their beliefs off of what he says. So that compels me, from time to time, to be snippy.

It's not that I take O'Reilly seriously. It's that I know that other people do take him seriously.

At 11:18 AM, Blogger Scott Roche said...

That's why I said that it's too bad folks don't realize that the heads are talking to make money not to inform.


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