Bill O'Reilly Is on the Ropes: Tries to Defend His Harassment Machine
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Yesterday, Bill Oâ€™Reilly defended his top henchman, producer Jesse Watters, who is supposedly â€œthe subject of far-left angst, because he goes out and talks to the bad guys.â€ During his conversation with Amanda Carpenter of the Washington Times â€” who agreed with everything the Fox News host was saying â€” Oâ€™Reilly defended his â€œambush journalismâ€ as a â€œlegitimate brand of journalismâ€:
Oâ€™REILLY: Now the far-left websites fear greatly the vicious guy Jesse Watters. And Jesse Watters is now the subject of far-left angst, because he goes out and talks to the bad guys. Tell us about that.
This, of course, a legitimate brand of journalism, has been practiced ever since television news was invented in the â€™60â€™s when the bad guys wonâ€™t comment, when they run and hide.
Actual journalists disagree with Oâ€™Reilly. While heâ€™s right that man-on-the-street interviews have been around for a long time, Fox has taken them to a whole new level. ThinkProgress recently contacted Columbia Journalism Review editor in chief Mike Hoyt â€” also a victim of an Oâ€™Reilly ambush earlier this year â€” who said that what Oâ€™Reilly does is nothing more than â€œfake journalismâ€:
Amanda Terkel is Deputy Research Director at the Center for American Progress and serves as Deputy Editor for The Progress Report and ThinkProgress.org at the Center for American Progress.