Bill O'Reilly baselessly attacked Oregonian columnist Peter Ames Carlin for "vilifying" O'Reilly "by using far-left website propaganda material." Carlin had written a column noting specific examples of O'Reilly's personal attacks, many of which Media Matters had previously documented.
Neil Cavuto's interview with President Bush featured softballs, false assertions, and a failure on Cavuto's part to ask any substantive questions regarding the Iraq war. In addition, Cavuto rarely challenged Bush's answers, including Bush's claim that "I think about Al Qaeda every day" -- even though he previously asserted that he was "not that concerned" about Osama bin Laden.
On Fox News' Special Report with Brit Hume, Charles Krauthammer falsely claimed that the estate tax "penalizes a lot of small businesses" and could leave the "heirs" of a "small-business owner" with "nothing." In fact, the estate tax affects very few small-business owners, and the highest marginal estate-tax rate is 46 percent.
On Fox & Friends First, Steve Doocy responded to a report by meteorologist Joe Bastardi about hot North American summers by suggesting, "It's just a great big cycle, it's not global warming." As Media Matters for America has documented, there is widespread consensus among scientists that global warming exists, and that humans are contributing to the problem.
During a discussion of the conflict between Israel and Hezbollah, Fox News host Page Hopkins revived the term "Axis of Weasels," used by conservatives to describe countries such as France, Germany, and Russia, which did not support the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003. Hopkins stated that, although "[w]e thought they were gone ... the so-called 'Axis of Weasels' appears to be back."
Brit Hume failed to challenge L. Paul Bremer's claim that the United States "had enough troops" in Baghdad following the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime in April 2003 to prevent widespread looting, but that U.S. forces "didn't have orders to stop the looting." In October 2004, Bremer had asserted that the United States "never had enough troops on the ground" to stop the looting, and that "it would have been helpful to have had more troops ... to stop the looting."
On Fox News' The Beltway Boys, Fred Barnes again denied the broad scientific consensus that human activity is contributing to global warming.
Fox News host Steve Doocy repeatedly touted Operation Mountain Thrust, in which coalition forces killed 600 Taliban fighters in Afghanistan, as "a real success story," adding that the operation's purported success is "going to allow U.S. forces to withdraw in some measure." At no point during the segment did Doocy mention why the operation might have been necessary -- according to recent reports by USA Today and Reuters, the Afghan insurgency is a greater threat than at any point since the U.S.-led effort to expel the Taliban in 2001.
On July 26, Bill O'Reilly baselessly attacked both The Oregonian and The Guardian newspapers for purportedly breaking "professional standards" and "attack[ing]" O'Reilly.
Numerous conservative pundits offered highly optimistic predictions about the U.S. invasion of Iraq regarding the conflict's duration, difficulty, and human and financial costs -- nearly all of which have proven to be wrong. But rather than hold these "Pollyanna pundits" accountable for their past misjudgments, the media have again provided a platform for their views about the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hezbollah. And echoing their rhetoric on Iraq, these conservative pundits have advocated further military action by the United States and its allies.
A Media Matters for America review has found that a July 24 report from a task force of the American Bar Association (ABA) on President Bush's use of so-called "signing statements" has been ignored by several media outlets, including the Los Angeles Times, all three television networks, and Fox News prime-time shows. The ABA report concluded that Bush's practice of attaching signing statements to congressional legislation "weaken[s] our cherished system of checks and balances and separation of powers."
The July 25 edition of MSNBC's Hardball, as well as the July 24 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, hosted self-identified "Middle East analyst" Michael Evans to discuss the current conflict in the Middle East. Evans's chief experience appears to be in the area of biblical prophecy.
On his radio show, Bill O'Reilly apparently modified his false claim that the New York Times' editorial board is "sitting ... out" the current conflict between Israel and Hezbollah, stating that the Times was "basically sitting ... out" [emphasis added] the issue. Yet during the same day's edition of The O'Reilly Factor, O'Reilly repeated his previous claim that the Times was "absolutely sitting it out editorially." In fact, the Times has now published four editorials on the conflict.