O'Reilly accused "liar," "left-wing loon" editor of launching personal attacks
Research ››› ››› BEN ARMBRUSTER
During the "Most Ridiculous Item of the Day" segment on the December 19 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor, host Bill O'Reilly said that a recent column by Roanoke Times editorial page editor Dan Radmacher was "disgraceful" and accused Radmacher of "us[ing] personal attacks all the time." O'Reilly's professed distaste for personal attacks did not prevent him from calling Radmacher a "loon." Similarly, on the December 19 edition of his nationally syndicated radio program, O'Reilly called Radmacher a "left-wing loon," "disgraceful," and "dishonest," adding that "[t]his Dan Radmacher, whoever he is, all The New York Times [Radmacher is an editor for The Roanoke Times] crew. They are liars."
In his December 17 column, Radmacher ridiculed the notion of a "War on Christmas," describing it as "nonsense [that] was manufactured in 2004 by that sanctimonious hypocrite Bill O'Reilly to bump up ratings -- and maybe distract attention from that whole unfortunate sexual harassment/phone sex episode." As a result, O'Reilly added The Roanoke Times to his " 'don't buy, don't advertise' list."
On the December 20 edition of The Radio Factor, O'Reilly continued to denounce Radmacher's column. He called The Roanoke Times a "stupid paper" and that it "is off-the-chart ridiculous." O'Reilly claimed: "I am going to watch everything that paper does. And every time they attack somebody personally for anything, I'm gonna put them on TV. I'll make an example of them." Later in the program, a caller who claimed to be a local business owner in Roanoke said he is "responsible for thousands of dollars of advertising in The Roanoke Times," and proclaimed that he "won't be doing business with them anymore." O'Reilly told the caller that he is "a hero," claiming: "Now, The Roanoke Times is gonna lose, I don't know, a couple of hundred thousand dollars?"
A December 21 Roanoke Times article reported on O'Reilly's reaction to Radmacher's column. According to the article, Radmacher said of O'Reilly's response: "I could see jumping onto something in The New York Times, but to make a big deal of a relatively small newspaper seems counterproductive," adding: "I had no idea he (O'Reilly) would be that easy to provoke."
From the December 19 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor:
O'REILLY: Time now for the "Most Ridiculous Item of the Day". As I mentioned in the "Talking Points Memo," the far left have become completely unhinged over losing the Christmas controversy.
And the most hysterical article we've come across comes from the Roanoke, Virginia, Times. Editorial page editor Dan Radmacher, a far-left ideologue, whining, saying fewer people are saying "Happy Holidays." Dan doesn't like that. And then levels personal attacks against me and others for believing it is wrong to prevent people -- to prevent people from saying "Merry Christmas."
Radmacher's column was disgraceful, and upon researching this loon, we found he uses personal attacks all the time. So we called his publisher, Wendy Zomparelli, but she's hiding under the desk.
The Roanoke Times is owned by the Landmark Corporation, which also owns the Weather Channel, and the paper is rapidly losing circulation. It is easy to see why.
The Roanoke Times now goes on our "don't buy, don't advertise" list. There are no standards at the paper. It is insulting to the good people of Virginia, and, of course, it is ridiculous.
From the December 19 edition of Westwood One's The Radio Factor with Bill O'Reilly:
O'REILLY: Yeah. And then our pal Joel Stein in the Los Angeles Times says I am an annoying gentile. OK. Probably true. And then there was hysteria in the Chicago Sun-Times and The Roanoke Times. Roanoke Times was the worst. It was extremely mean-spirited, personal attacks on me by a guy named Dan Radmacher, a left-wing loon. We did some research on him, and it's disgraceful. And they go on our "don't buy, don't advertise" list, Roanoke Times. Because anybody would employ a guy like that -- and you know, and we did, we walked back and looked at what he did -- is irresponsible. It's just horrible.
O'REILLY: I guess it is. So if you want "Keep It Pithy" mugs. They're new. "Keep It Pithy" mugs, Culture Warrior mugs. All of that. The mugs are great. They're on sale today, and then we have all the other stuff on billoreilly.com.
OK. 1-877-9-NOSPIN. I get a kick out of Reverend [Barry] Lynn [executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State] saying, "Oh, I don't think it's mean-spirited." Here's the headline in The Roanoke Times, Roanoke, Virginia, Times: "Christian bullies manufactured this war on Christmas." Oh, that's not mean-spirited, is it?
HILL: What do you mean, manufactured it?
O'REILLY: Yeah, I made it up. I made up all the lawsuits --
HILL: How can you make up this stuff? Everybody knows -- you got into the store and they say it to you.
O'REILLY: Here's the deal: These people are dishonest. They are dishonest. This Dan Radmacher, whoever he is, all The New York [sic] Times crew. They are liars. And I hate to use that word, I really do, but there's -- everyone knows what happened. And the reason it isn't happening this year is because of me and other people who exposed it. And we stopped it. That's why there haven't been any lawsuits filed this year. Because they all lose. But the Supreme Court is hearing this big New York City case, where the New York City public schools allow a menorah, allow a star and crescent flag, but will now not allow the manger scene. That's unbelievably prejudicial against Christians.
From the December 20 edition of Westwood One's The Radio Factor with Bill O'Reilly:
O'REILLY: Every single day, I am attacked personally by the press, by other people in the press. Every single day of the year. Now, some of it is nonsensical, some of it is desperate, some of it is foolish, and I ignore 90 percent of it. Once in a while, I'll make an example of somebody like the Roanoke, Virginia, Times. Little paper. Serves, you know, about 100,000 people. But it is off-the-chart ridiculous.
And last night on the television side, I said don't buy it, don't advertise in it. It's a rag. It's not doing you any favors. Off an editorial, screaming about O'Reilly, the Christian bully, and then attacking me personally. And my thesis is just don't order people not to say, "Merry Christmas." Just don't order people not to display the signs of the season. That's all I want. You want to say "Happy Holidays"? You go right ahead and say it. I say it. OK?
So because I took this stand and because we won, we won, now I'm being attacked personally. And so once in a while, I'll make an example of people who do that. And The Roanoke Times got it last night. And now I'm gonna watch everything that paper does. And every time they attack somebody personally for anything, I'm gonna put them on TV. I'll make an example of them.
O'REILLY: Roanoke, Virginia. [Caller.] What's going on, [caller]?
CALLER: Merry Christmas, Bill.
O'REILLY: Thank you.
CALLER: I'm a local business owner here in Roanoke, Virginia, responsible for thousands of dollars of advertising in The Roanoke Times and have had to deal with their liberal slant for years. And needless to say, I won't be doing business with them anymore.
O'REILLY: Excellent. So I outed them, and I outed them correctly right?
CALLER: There's no competition in Roanoke. It's basically a traditional, beautiful part of the country and there's nobody to step up, just like you say in your book. I think, you know, a lot of the traditional leaders are possibly a little bit afraid of the confrontation, so I'm voting with my pocketbook. Thank you.
O'REILLY: Well, you know, you're a hero. You hang on the line. [The caller] gets a signed Culture Warrior -- and -- a Culture Warrior mug.
WIEHL: Wow, [caller].
O'REILLY: Because, [caller], wait, I wanna get this straight. You're pulling your ads out of the paper?
CALLER: Yeah. I've been doing it for years here in The Roanoke Times, and that's enough for me. Thank you, Bill.
O'REILLY: Good, you're welcome. And I'm glad I could do that because I -- when we researched this stupid paper -- when they attacked me personally over the Christmas thing, I said, "What is that? What is that?" And then we started to research the guy, this is the editorial director, and that's what he does all the time. And I said, "Wait a minute" -- just like you said, [caller] -- "Roanoke's not like that. Roanoke, Virginia, is not like that." So then I went national with it last night. And I'm -- [caller], you're a standup guy, a T-warrior. If every American businessperson would say to these loony papers, "You better" -- look, I don't mind The Roanoke Times or anybody else disagreeing with me on the issues. That's fine. You can disagree all day long, and I will respect that. You start to attack me or anybody else personally, I'm coming after you. I'm gonna come after you.
Now, The Roanoke Times is gonna lose, I don't know, a couple of hundred thousand dollars?
WIEHL: Probably. This, just with [the caller] right there.
O'REILLY: And maybe the publisher will say, "You know, maybe we'll be a little more fair. Maybe we'll get a little more responsibility. We'll get rid of the guy who's doing this and we'll bring in some people who can conduct themselves in a dignified manner."