Itâ€™s like Hilary Clinton and Bill Oâ€™Reilly had some kind of prior agreement, â€œYou can be just tough enough to please your audience, but not so tough to hit me with real difficult questions.â€
Analyzing his own performance and the interaction between he and Clinton of the FOX News interview, Oâ€™Reilly seemed most proud of his inclusion of the oh so haughty â€œbupkusâ€ in one accusatory examination of the Clinton administration where he pointed out it didnâ€™t do jack to ease our energy problems.
While Oâ€™Reilly reasonably socked Clinton highlighting her record of voting against nuclear energy seven times, he let her wriggle away when she made the rhetorical and ridiculous, â€œWe all didnâ€™t do enoughâ€¦â€ somehow sucking Republicans into her bad decisions on energy.Â
She then qualified that ridiculous comment by saying â€œEverybody gets blame including consumers and driversâ€¦we are not acting like Americans.â€Â Oâ€™Reilly let that by without even a grimace!Â
I was screaming at the TV, â€œAre you out of your mind!Â What is it Americans are suppose to do, stop living their lives, stop running their businesses and their air conditioners and their factories?â€Â All Americans should be riding their bikes to work I suppose.Â Weâ€™ll follow your lead Hilary, and how about telling your Hollywood buddies to quit flying private jets!
â€œPoliticians are not to blame, it is you irresponsible citizens!â€Â This was Clintonâ€™s message.
Her answer for the whole energy fiasco is to institute a â€œwindfallâ€ profits tax on oil companies.Â Of course in Oâ€™Reilly, Clinton has a real soul mate who loves to vilify oil companies for making obscene profits screwing the â€œfolksâ€ with clandestine nefarious intent.
Oâ€™Reilly didnâ€™t bother to point out that Jimmy Carter tried to punish oil companies during his tenure promising great increases in revenue to governement.Â Carterâ€™s policies killed our economy and drove up interest rates to record levels.Â Additionally, tax revenue from oil companies plummeted, less than 90 billion of the 393 billion Carter promised.
On Universal Health Care, Clinton rationalized her position by telling Oâ€™Reilly he was already subsidizing health care.Â Oâ€™Reilly should have replied, â€œIf I am already subsidizing it then why do you have to raise my taxes?â€
Clinton went on to proclaim she was going to drive down health care costs by regulating the industry.Â Thatâ€™s amazing!Â Give us one instance where governmentâ€™s extemporaneous control over markets has decreased costs?Â And if she is going to drive down costs, why does she have to raise taxes?Â Oâ€™Reilly didnâ€™t ask her, but at least we are going to have â€œsafeguards and accountabilityâ€!
Clinton proclaimed, â€œWe will be tough and take them onâ€.Â Unfortunately, she wasnâ€™t talking about Iraq or Iran, she was talking about dastardly oil companies and insurance companies and Wal-Mart.
After Oâ€™Reilly hit Clinton with a real good one about her record in New York explaining that highest taxed state in the country is â€œin the tankâ€, Iâ€™m all ready for Clintonâ€™s response and Oâ€™Reilly jumps right in to take a gratuitous self-absorbed compliment proclaiming he and FOX News has treated her â€œfairerâ€ than any other network.Â Unbelieveable.
Aside from a light spar over his tax rate going up six percent and no affirmation from Clinton to cap FICA contributions at $109,000.00 the entire interview was conciliatory and even placatory.Â Instead of holding Clinton to task, Oâ€™Reilly continuously threw in the capitulate qualifier with each inquiry, â€œI know the Republicans are doing this tooâ€.
Mr. â€œFair and Balancedâ€ managed this interview weak and wimpy. Â Itâ€™s pretty clear journalists know just about as much about economics and business as do politicians, and that ainâ€™t much.
Here are questions Oâ€™Reilly should have asked Mrs. Clinton.
Why did the Whitewater Development Corporation use unethical sales agreements to subjugate poor and middle class people purchasing plots in your development where you subsequently confiscated property that was nearly paid for after only one or two payments were missed allowing your company to resell the land for more profit?Â I thought you were a champion for the poor?
Since we know the oil companies are going to change their operating procedures when hit with immoral, arbitrary, and politically expedient taxes sheltering revenue which rightly should belong to â€œthe peopleâ€, why not just nationalize those enterprises and take them over like Hugo Chavez?Â
Since it is proven that raising income tax rates decreases revenue to the government and shifts the total tax burden to the middle class, why not tax the complete value of an individualâ€™s estate each year to obtain those revenues â€œrich peopleâ€ shamefully hide from government?Â We can start with your friends Ted Kennedy and John Kerry.
Intelligence officials we have spoken to, some of these guys â€œin the roomâ€ with these terrorists, have affirmed that waterboarding has extracted valuable information from three high ranking Al Qaeda officials.Â What are you going to tell the American people after we are hit with a nuclear bomb attack which could have been averted if your policy on waterboarding was more â€œliberalâ€?
It seems to me the only way we can aspire to the lofty â€œwe’re in this togetherâ€ philosophy you prescribe is to adopt a flat tax where no group is awarded incentive by subjugating another group.Â If you believe the philosophy that â€œwe are all in this togetherâ€ how can you possibly embrace a tax system that ostensibly aids the poor by socking it to the rich, and how can the poor be considered â€œin it togetherâ€ if they pay nothing?Â
You have proclaimed in the past and in this interview that you are ready to take on the â€œtoughest job in the worldâ€.Â Before you do so I have some friends in the military who would like you to accompany them on a patrol in the desert with a fifty pound pack where you only have to hike twelve miles in blistering heat.
â€¦you know, to demonstrate you can do simple jobs as well as that tremendously â€œtoughâ€ one at the air conditioned White House.
Copyright 2008 Jim Pontillo