Conservative TV Hosts

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  • Before you get too excited about O’Reilly’s firing, look at his replacements.
  • Bill O'Reilly has for years been Fox's most valuable on-air talent. He may also have been its loneliest.
  • 21st Century Fox is parting ways with the host of The O'Reilly Factor, who stood atop cable news ratings for years. Tucker Carlson will replace O'Reilly in the 8 p.m. ET time slot.
  • The Fox News host abruptly announced "a vacation" amid sexual harassment allegations.
  • Roger Ailes' future as chief of Fox News was thrown into doubt on Tuesday as several news organizations including Variety reported his imminent departure following allegations of sexual harassment.
  • Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes is facing a sexual harassment suit from former anchor Gretchen Carlson, as well as allegations of similar behavior from six other women. But this is not the first time Rupert Murdoch has had to deal with a harassment case in his media empire.
  • Gretchen Carlson, a former Fox News host claims she lost her job for refusing CEO's alleged unwanted sexual advances.
  • On “Fox and Friends,” Gretchen Carlson was the archetypal dim blonde on the couch, sitting between two men and struggling to understand the crazy ways of the modern world.
  • For months, Bill O’Reilly has been waging a war on the Black Lives Matter movement. In his crusade, O’Reilly is joined by other Fox News personalities such as Megyn Kelly and Greg Gutfeld. Chris Christie, Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee and other conservative elites also heard O’Reilly’s call to arms. Black Lives Matters believes that police and the state should respect the constitutional rights of all Americas. They are making a simple demand. But, in an America beset by the culture of cruelty, in the thrall of a neoliberal nightmare and reactionary white identity politics, such a justice claim is considered radical and extreme.
  • On Friday, Donald Trump said that Fox News's Megyn Kelly had it out for him during the first Republican presidential debate. And he had a theory as to why. "She gets out and she starts asking me all sorts of ridiculous questions," Trump told CNN. "You could see there was blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her... wherever."
  • Writers and advocates on the left have long catalogued the exaggerations, meltdowns and many stumbles of Fox’s Bill O’Reilly, to show that the guy who runs the No-Spin Zone is frequently unfair and relentlessly unbalanced. But now O’Reilly has a different sort of watchdog in CNN media reporter Brian Stelter, host of “Reliable Sources” – and Stelter is attracting more company. Oh sure, the Fox bully dismisses Stelter — along with his critics at Mother Jones, Media Matters and for that matter Salon — as just another left winger out to get him. But that charge won’t stick. The bright, earnest, hardworking former New York Times reporter isn’t known for his ideological crusading; he goes after MSNBC, not just Fox. But when Stelter finds an important story, he digs in.
  • Details matter. Truth matters. Fact-checkers are needed more than ever in a time of persistent spin. In news, the details matter. Just look at NBC’s Brian Williams, and maybe even Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly. Williams, who was in the actual war zone of Iraq, has been suspended for six months for his harrowing account of a helicopter trip that wasn’t all that harrowing. O’Reilly, who was not in a war zone but at least left the impression that he might have been, wove as chilling a yarn as he could about covering riots in Argentina after the Falklands War. O’Reilly hasn’t been suspended but he’s been on air a lot to defend his reputation. What both Williams and O’Reilly face is that they live under the shadow of the public’s shorthand rule when it comes to trust: Have you been straight with us?
  • Bill O'Reilly has repeatedly claimed he personally "heard" a shotgun blast that killed a figure in the investigation into President John F. Kennedy's assassination while reporting for a Dallas television station in 1977. O'Reilly's claim is implausible and contradicted by his former newsroom colleagues who denied the tale in interviews with Media Matters. A police report, contemporaneous reporting, and a congressional investigator who was probing Kennedy's death further undermine O'Reilly's story. George de Mohrenschildt was a Russian emigre who befriended Kennedy assassin Lee Harvey Oswald and testified before the Warren Commission investigating the Kennedy assassination.
  • After NBC News suspended anchor Brian Williams for erroneously claiming that he was nearly shot down in a helicopter while covering the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, Fox News host Bill O'Reilly went on a tear. On his television show, the top-rated cable news anchor declared that the American press isn't "half as responsible as the men who forged the nation." He bemoaned the supposed culture of deception within the liberal media, and he proclaimed that the Williams controversy should prompt questioning of other "distortions" by left-leaning outlets. Yet for years, O'Reilly has recounted dramatic stories about his own war reporting that don't withstand scrutiny—even claiming he acted heroically in a war zone that he apparently never set foot in.
  • I grew up in New York in the 1960s and 70s saying a prayer whenever I heard a siren – a prayer for whomever the siren wailed, and a prayer for the men behind the siren, the policemen and firemen risking their lives every day, my uncles (and later cousins) among them. That’s what my mother taught me. I still find myself doing it sometimes. As I got older, I learned the police weren’t seen as protectors, especially in black communities. They were sometimes viewed as predators, in New York, and across the country. My first national news story, as an adult, profiled the 1981 Milwaukee protest movement that emerged when a young black man, Ernie Lacy, died in police custody after a cop pinned him to the ground with a knee to the neck.
  • Ebola is a very scary disease with horrifying symptoms, but it poses very little risk to the US. Despite that, the conversation surrounding the disease has become exceptionally heated in recent days. Republicans have accused the Obama administration of mishandling the outbreak. Democrats have blamed the disease's spread on Republican-backed budget cuts. Politicians from both parties have called for a travel ban for flights in and out of Ebola-stricken countries. Media outlets have run stories that suggest, with little scientific basis, the disease could go airborne. The public is also calling on the government to do more. On Wednesday, Fox New's Shepard Smith said everyone needs to calm down.
  • Get ready for bombs bursting in air and this election’s October Surprise – President Obama’s air strikes to “degrade and ultimately destroy” ISIS. Last week a Fox News poll identified a phenomenon that my friend, pollster Dana Blanton, dubbed “The ISIS effect.” “Equal numbers of voters now say terrorism is the most important issue to their vote as say the economy – 41 percent say each will be ‘extremely’ important in their decision,” Blanton wrote. She later noted “four years ago [in the 2010 midterms dominated by Republicans], 57 percent said the economy would be ‘extremely’ important while 41 percent said terrorism.
  • During George Zimmerman's trial for the alleged murder of Trayvon Martin, the media relied mostly on one man for pro-Zimmerman commentary: his friend and fellow neighborhood watch volunteer, Frank Taaffe. It has since come to light that Taaffe is an ex-con and fervent white supremacist who believes that whites and blacks have no business mingling and claims that "the only time a black life is validated is when a white person kills them." He also hosts a white-power podcast. On one episode last fall he argued that all women who married black men would probably meet the same fate as Nicole Brown Simpson. ("I always say, you lie down with dogs you're going to get fleas—especially if they're black dogs.")
  • A central question of Fox News' latest documentary on Benghazi has already been answered by official congressional and State Department investigations into the terrorist attacks. On August 27, Fox announced "13 Hours at Benghazi," a new documentary hosted by Special Report anchor Bret Baier that will reportedly include "exclusive" interviews with three American security personnel who were present for the September 2012 attacks. The production, scheduled to air September 5, is based on a forthcoming book written by journalist Mitchell Zuckoff and the CIA contractors.
  • Next month will mark exactly two years since the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi. And a week from this Friday, Fox News will present a special documentary about the attacks, speaking with security operatives who were there, titled 13 Hours at Benghazi.