January 7, 2008

Oh, my goodness! Bill O'Reilly called somebody "low class."

I'd say it's "unhinged" to call this "unhinged." It's absolutely nothing of significance. I am so sick of the way any display of emotional intensity is characterized as a mental disorder. It shows: 1. a prudish concern for decorum and 2. a lack of compassion for those who actually do suffer from mental illness. I would think liberals would reject both things, but again and again — on the web, at least — I see that they don't.

ADDED: I watched O'Reilly's coverage of the incident (on his Monday show), and in it we see that he pushes the man a couple times. O'Reilly had two friendly female commentators on the show to talk to him about it, and one of them tells him the shoving was wrong. The other accepts it — under the circumstances. It seems to me that both the large man doing the deliberate blocking of the camera's shot and O'Reilly with his pushing were acting out in a rude, macho way, but it wasn't crazy. Both were pursuing their own interests and choosing their techniques. My post isn't about right and wrong, but about sane and crazy. They weren't crazy.

Now, there is a further question about whether these 2 sane men who pursued self-interest had good judgment about what they ought to do. Here, I think, clearly, O'Reilly won. It worked for him within the context of what he does. People working for the campaign should not be displaying hostility to the news media, and they should especially not discriminate against Fox News.

By the way, Barack Obama looks great in the final O'Reilly edit. He sees O'Reilly — when O'Reilly calls out to him from back in the crowd — and comes over and shakes hands, seems relaxed and warm, and agrees to meet with O'Reilly after the primary. He's setting a good example for everyone.

36 comments:

peter hoh said...

Well, for someone who has built a persona around being a regular guy, as opposed to the elites in suits, it's a revealing slip of the tongue.

Should it inspire a great deal of tongue-wagging? No. It's obvious tht O'Reilly is a blowhard. This isn't exhibit A.

reader_iam said...

It's also intellectually dishonest and manipulative.

peter hoh said...

I should add that I thought O'Reilly was far more composed on the video than I had been led to believe from some written reports of this incident.

Verso said...

I wouldn't call shoving someone just "any display of emotional intensity." Doesn't that clearly cross a line? It's the beginning of an attack; it sends the message "if you don't start complying with my orders right now, I will escalate the violence." It's a warning shot.

Am I overreacting?

reader_iam said...

Regular guys, especially of a certain generation and older, use SOB. I don't think this was a particularly notable "slip," nor do I think it's especially revealing.

Verso said...

I see, now, that the link doesn't mention that O'Reilly physically shoved an Obama staffer as part of this altercation. I fault C&L for leaving out that detail (though it is mentioned elsewhere on the page), but that has to be considered as part of this episode. I don't think this can be treated as normal or acceptable behavior when you Factor in the shoving. (Pun intended.)

Sean Wisnieski said...

"Well, for someone who has built a persona around being a regular guy, as opposed to the elites in suits, it's a revealing slip of the tongue."

Insofar as he's a New Yorker, calling a stranger (who was wearing a suit) a low-class son of a bitch sounds pretty "regular guy"-ish to me.

Yachira said...

Remember Ann, that the liberal-left have no answer to conservative arguments. Therefore, they attempt to quash speech and argument at every turn, every time.

Middle Class Guy said...

Reporters, photographers, and other media types get pushy all the time. It is disingenuous to single out O’Reilly. Reporters push, shove, and curse at each other, security details, even spectators to get where they want to be or get what the want. Boorish behavior is part if the First Amendment right to freedom of the press; according to them.

Liberals gloating over this should look at their own behavior and language on their sites. Of course a requirement to be a Liberal is absolute hypocrisy.

Bissage said...

What a disappointment. Whatever happened to calling someone a scumbag? Calling someone low class makes it sound like you went to college or something. Sheesh!

Meade said...

I would not say it's "unhinged" for you to say it's "unhinged" to call this "unhinged."

Sean Wisnieski said...

As for the shoving, I don't see any indication of such on the video and it certainly doesn't seem likely given what we know about campaign security these days.

Think about it. If a man is reasonably close to coming within stabbing distance of a Presidential frontrunner, there would be a good deal more hubbub if he suddenly started shoving campaign staffers around in an effort to get at him.

One shouldn't think I'm defending O'Reilly here. He was plainly vulgar, boorish, and acting uncomfortably like Michael Moore. But I really doubt he'd have gotten the chance to shove anyone that close to Obama more than once.

reader_iam said...

Middle Class Guy is right.

I can remember getting whacked in the head on a number of occasions by videocamera-wielding journalists jostling for position when I was a print reporter. Trust me, they'll shove their "own" in a heartbeat, and almost anyone else, under certain circumstances, and certainly get in people faces. I'm not an O'Reilly booster, but this really, truly is very disingenuous if people really know what often goes on. Alternatively, people really don't have the experience to know what they're talking about it.

Bissage said...

Other timeless socioeconomic putdowns: scumbucket, dirtbag and dirtball!

Verso said...

Sean,
Check out this link.

The Obama staffer says he was shoved by O'Reilly. You can see the Secret Service in the video Ann posted a link to, letting O'Reilly by but blocking the camera person.

reader_iam said...

Confession: On one occasion, when the whack was especially purposeful (and sharp), I bided my time and then deliberately used my reporter's notebook to screw up the SOB camera guys shot every chance I got during that particular event. Not particularly mature, but to this very minute, I don't regret it for a second.

reader_iam said...

Summary of my comments: I'm tellin' ya, it's a jungle out there--and all side participate.

MadisonMan said...

The video shows chaos. Frustrated people swear at chaos. Completely normal.

Stephen Snell said...

Yes, Scumbag -- for some reason it made me think of DeNiro calling the fat bookie a scumbag in "Mean Streets" and the ensuing (and awkward) melee.

Not for nothin' but O'Reilly should've called him a dunsky.

Ann Althouse said...

I don't think it's high class to use the insult "low class." Seems more working class to my ear. Just like the compliment "classy," which I think O'Reilly uses a lot.

terrance said...

Ann wrote:

It shows: 1. a prudish concern for decorum and 2. a lack of compassion for those who actually do suffer from mental illness.

The trick is to find the right combination of self-control and emotional intensity.

It's good to see Ann expressing greater sensitivity for the mentally ill, especially after her comments here: http://althouse.blogspot.com/2007/08/moxvox.html#comments

peter hoh said...

Of course it's not a mark of class to use "low class" as an insult. When I've seen clips of O'Reilly, he seems very concerned about presenting himself as a member of the working class. As such, I think he ought to stick to other insults. It seems to me a bit like a liberal who insists on his feminist cred using "ugly broad" as an insult.

tightspotkilo said...

The Obama staffer says he was shoved by O'Reilly.

Yeah, like I'm banking on that to be the unvarnished gospel truth as to what really happened.

Seems to me that if O'Reilly or anybody else roughed up a presidential candidate's aide he'd be promptly tased and frog-marched away in handcuffs and charges would be pressed, so the absence of those is telling about what really happened here.en.

rcocean said...

Thats it?!

Thats the "screaming and cursing" at a Obama staffer?

Once again the Lefty press has shown they have NO credibility and will lie and exaggerate to attack anyone they dislike.

BOR called him an SOB and mutters "thats Low Class". I've seen more heated discussions at a ladies tea party.

SteveR said...

O'Reilly rarely does this type of thing so he obviously knew what he was doing:

A) holding his version of the video and story until tonight, which will bring him huge ratings going into a big political news week.

B) driving Keith Olbermann to be more obsessed.

C) getting Obama to agree to be interviewed.

D) laughing all the way to the bank.

hdhouse said...

Yachira said...
Remember Ann, that the liberal-left have no answer to conservative arguments. Therefore, they attempt to quash speech and argument at every turn, every time."

I don't recognize Yachira from any prior posts...gosh what a welcome addition he is. Tell me, do you toss out bullshit by the ounce or by the pound?

And as to O-Really - I hardly recognized him without his lupha sponge.

goesh said...

I second "that's it?!"

MadisonMan said...

I don't recognize Yachira from any prior posts.

He (She?) has been around. I can't recall a history, though, so I don't know if the post is extremely ironic or just echo roomy.

hdhouse said...

madisonman

if that is an example of the thought process he/she has every reason not to be memorable.

ZPS said...

Ahh Bill...reminds me of his days when he "won" a Peabody over at "Inside Edition." Class act...class act.

rsb said...

Bill O'Reilly proves that brains can have very little to do with success.

garage mahal said...

Yea not unhinged at all Ann. Cap't Phone Sex just shoved an Obama bodyguard to make sure his Factor Cameras got a clear shot, and to ask a very important question!

Will you come on The Factor?

Sheesh. Didn't these people know who he was?

Blake said...

This is all about the breasts, isn't it.

Greg in Madtown said...

Amen. These pseudo arguments are distracting, and unnecessarily support those (of all ideologies) who wish to polarize the U.S. I've backed Obama ever since seeing Richardson's bumbling performance in the first presidential debate; and Obama certainly doesn't need his supporters to defend him from O'Reily. A side note: I've read your blog ever since you ordered a cab from Madison's best cab company (where I took your order), and I've grown to admire you as much for your level-headedness as for your refusal to think inside partisan boxes. My apologies if calling you levelheaded insults any readers with crew cuts.

sfletcher99 said...

stephen snell-

Not for nothin' but O'Reilly should've called him a dunsky.

I've always heard it as "dumbski"- a slang 'portmanteau' of "dumb" and "-ski" (think "Polack" jokes.)

The Exalted said...

ah ha ha

"the left quashes speech" in the context of bill o'reilly of all people making a fool of himself in public shoving and yelling at strangers

its always rich here.