- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 4, 2009

O’REILLY’S RESPONSE

Bill O’Reilly, host of the top-rated cable-TV talk show (on the Fox News Channel), countered critics who have tried to blame him for the slaying of a Kansas abortionist.

“The liberal outcry over the murder of George Tiller, the late-term abortion doctor from Kansas, demonstrates exactly where American discourse is going,” Mr. O’Reilly said in a column in the New York Post.

“Shot dead in a church by an anti-government militant, Tiller did not deserve his fate. Even though the man destroyed an estimated 60,000 fetuses that could have lived outside the womb, he was an American citizen entitled to protection. No matter what you think about abortion, it is a sad day for the country when vigilantism takes a life,” Mr. O’Reilly said.

“It took just minutes after the report of Tiller’s murder for the far-left loons to hit the Web sites. Postings on Daily Kos and the Huffington Post immediately blamed Fox News and me for inciting Tiller’s killer. Even though I reported on the doctor honestly, the loons asserted that my analysis of him was ‘hateful.’

“Chief among the complaints was the doctor’s nickname: ‘Tiller the baby killer.’ Some pro-lifers branded him that, and I reported it. So did hundreds of other news sources. But the bigger picture here is the glorification of Tiller. …

“But behind all the bluster was a well thought-out, coordinated campaign. By exploiting the death of Tiller, the far left is seeking to silence Americans who are appalled at late-term abortion.

“By demonizing people like me who believe that terminating viable fetuses must only be done when there are catastrophic health ramifications, pro-abortion zealots are trying to inhibit dissent on the abortion issue in general.”

REAL PEOPLE

“The debate over the Supreme Court nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor has revived the debate over racial preferences - not only because of speculation that Sotomayor herself is an ‘affirmative action’ pick as a Hispanic woman, but also because of her role in the controversial case of Ricci v. DeStefano,” Cathy Young writes at www.realclearpolitics.com.

“It involves a lawsuit by 18 firefighters (17 whites and one Hispanic) in New Haven, Conn., denied promotions to lieutenant and captain because no black applicants passed the test. Fearing charges of race discrimination, the city threw out the test and left the vacancies unfilled,” the writer noted.

“Three weeks before the Sotomayor selection was announced, Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen wrote that the one issue on which he most wanted to [know] the future nominee’s opinion was Ricci. As it happens, we know where Sotomayor stands on the case: she was one of three federal judges who, in a one-paragraph opinion, voted to dismiss the lawsuit.

“Like some college admission policies that have awarded extra points for race or ethnicity and produced vast racial gaps in acceptance standards, the Ricci case - named after lead plaintiff Frank Ricci - starkly demonstrates the perniciousness of race-based preferences. It illustrates the fact that so-called ‘reverse discrimination’ is not simply a violation of some abstract principle of justice but a system that penalizes real people. It also shows how demeaning the underlying assumptions of this form of affirmative action really are to minorities.”

BLAMING BUSH

“The Rasmussen poll conducted over the weekend of May 30-31 asked a key question designed to give us perspective on Obama’s current popularity,” Dick Morris writes in the Hill newspaper.

“The question was whether the current problems ‘are due to the recession that began under the Bush administration or to the policies Obama has put in place since taking office.’ In other words, who’s to blame, Bush or Obama?

“By 62-27, voters say Bush is still the culprit.

“As long as this opinion remains prevalent, Obama will continue to enjoy high popularity. But when it changes, as it inevitably must, we will see him begin a long, long fall.

“And this is the key measurement to watch,” Mr. Morris said.

“The real recession - dating from the stock market collapse - began four months before Bush left office. And it is now four months since Obama was inaugurated. From this vantage, it still looks to voters like Bush’s recession.

“But it will become increasingly obvious that the large deficit Obama has incurred while pursuing his cure for the recession is, on its own, causing more problems than it solves. As high interest rates and, most likely, inflation, begin to set in - with no relief in unemployment - it will be obvious that Obamanomics isn’t working and is, in fact, aggravating the economic trouble.

“Obama, recognizing the danger, has recently begun to speak out - without even cracking a guilty smile - against the huge budget deficit he created. He is trying to blame the deficit, too, on Bush. But voters will not overlook the huge spending sprees of January and February, when Obama quadrupled the 2009 deficit. They will come to see that spending as a huge mistake and will shift their blame to the new president who proposed it.”

LIBERAL VS. LIBERAL

“How could Paul Krugman, winner of the Nobel Prize in economics and author of generally excellent columns in the New York Times, get it so wrong?” liberal pundit Robert Scheer writes at the www. thenation .com.

“His column last Sunday - ‘Reagan Did It’ - which stated that ‘the prime villains behind the mess we’re in were Reagan and his circle of advisers,’ is perverse in shifting blame from the obvious villains closer at hand,” Mr. Scheer said.

“It is disingenuous to ignore the fact that the derivatives scams at the heart of the economic meltdown didn’t exist in President Reagan’s time. The huge expansion in collateralized mortgage and other debt, the bubble that burst, was the direct result of enabling deregulatory legislation pushed through during the Clinton years.

“Ronald Reagan’s signing off on legislation easing mortgage requirements back in 1982 pales in comparison to the damage wrought 15 years later by a cabal of powerful Democrats and Republicans who enabled the wave of newfangled financial gimmicks that resulted in the economic collapse.

“Reagan didn’t do it, but Clinton-era Treasury secretaries Robert Rubin and Lawrence Summers, now a top economic adviser in the Obama White House, did. They, along with then-Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan and Republican congressional leaders James Leach and Phil Gramm, blocked any effective regulation of the over-the-counter derivatives that turned into the toxic assets now being paid for with tax dollars.”

Greg Pierce can be reached at 202/636-3285 or gpierce@washingtontimes .com.

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