Bill O’Reilly’s Web As Bad as DailyKos

Bill O’Reilly has been railing against Democrats and corporate sponsors who are associating themselves with the YearlyKos convention, on the grounds that there is a lot of filth and hate spewing from the DailyKos website. While the former is his right and the latter is likely true, virtually all the examples cited come from commenters and the hundreds of site “diarists” rather than front page posters.

John Aravosis has done a bit of digging and found that “O’Reilly’s own Web site contains some of the most hideous hate you’ve ever seen.” Among those he found were some oblique death threats against Hillary Clinton, which some yahoo has now reported to the Secret Service.

Now, I seldom take anonymous comments left on message boards particularly seriously and see no reason to do so in this case. Nor do I think holding O’Reilly responsible for his failure to moderate the hundreds of messages his site gets makes any more sense than expecting Markos Moulitsas Zuniga to do that for the tens of thousands of words written at DailyKos every day.

If I’m reading Aravosis correctly, he agrees. Rather, the point is that O’Reilly is fanning the flames against DailyKos for something of which he himself is “guilty.” As Aravosis notes, the site even has a rather explicit disclaimer: “ will not be held liable for any user activity on the message boards. We do not actively monitor user-submitted content.”

Of course, hypocrisy by O’Reilly and others who rely on hyping the sins of their political targets is so common as to be a given. It’s worth noting from time to time, however.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Wayne says:

    O’Reilly is hypocritical at times but this is lame example of hypocrisy. For one to get on the Secret Service list takes less then an actual death threat. Second there is a difference in making a joke about not saving someone and wishing them dead. Sometime that line is not clear while other time it is clear that the speaker is speaking in a hateful mean manner.

    The examples given are pretty lame examples of hate speech regardless of whom they were referring to. Now if O’Reilly wouldn’t denounce the killing of Hillary or refuse to say that he would take down the post if he knew about it, it would show him as a hypocrite. That is what he has asked of his KOS guests and they refuse to do so.

    Yes it is possible for someone to purposely post an embarrassing post for that purpose. However if you look at the history of the type of post and posters it will give you insight on that blog site. I don’t read either of those sites. I have heard that the general attitude of KOS is hateful while O’Reillys is not. You will get some posters even on this site that spew anger, insults and sometimes hate but it is nowhere near the level of some sites I have seen.

    Where should the line be drawn? I am not sure but I know some sites have clearly crossed that line of civility.

  2. David L says:

    Where should the line be drawn? I am not sure but I know some sites have clearly crossed that line of civility.

    In a free country, thoughts are not crimes. Certain actions may be crimes. What I happen to think is no business of the state. Freedom of speech means the right to express your thoughts, without approval of the state. Do you thinks your thoughts should be any less protected?

  3. jpe says:

    Where should the line be drawn?

    I can’t imagine anyone thinking this is an important enough topic to bother looking for a line. Let the rabble at LGF & DKos do what the vulgate do.

  4. Wayne says:

    Thoughts may not be a crime but expressing those thought can be a crime. I believe there was a previous thread that discusses that freedom of speech is indeed limited. I for one think the government should be extremely cautious when trying to control thought or speech.

    The Government and many in society do try. I extremely apprehensive when the government tries this using law. I think society should play a role but do not like it when let’s say MSM destroys someone to do so. Often using wild and flimsy accusations.

    Should someone be able to say just about anything they like? Yes. Should those that disagree be able to say what they like in response and condemn it? Yes. Should I be able to stop shopping at someone shop for those views? Yes. Should I be allowed to harass and prevent other shoppers from shopping there? No.

  5. Michael says:

    I have heard that the general attitude of KOS is hateful while O’Reillys is not.

    That’s about the funniest thing I’ve heard all day.