Today in controversies and calamities
"A must-read on the biggest blowhard in journalism. Is O'Reilly a shot fox?" asks Kevin Mitchell with Guardian and The Observer, after Mother Jones revealed that Bill O'Reilly may have his own "Brian Williams problem" (10,300+ shares). The idiom "grinning like a shot fox" does indeed come to mind, when you consider O'Reilly's response to the accusations thus far (mainly, name-calling). "Bill O'Reilly has magical fake memories of being a war reporter too," concludes BuzzFeed's Mike Giglio. "I am shocked, shocked to learn Bill O'Reilly may have made up his history as a war correspondent facing down death," tweets Paul Waldman with The American Prospect and Washington Post. "Bill O'Reilly, who excoriated Brian Williams over war stories, claims heroics in war zone he apparently wasn't in," elaborates freelance journalist Staci D. Kramer. "LOL at any reporter trying to pass off a post-war protest in Buenos Aires as surviving combat in the Falklands War," reacts Dan Trombly. "It’s almost as if there’s a culture that glamorizes war reporting to an unhealthy extent," wryly notes Huffington Post's Ben Walsh. In response, the article's co-author David Corn says, "His right to impugn others ought to be diminished until he answers the basic questions about his statements."
Rudy Giuliani is defending his comments on the President because, basically, "Obama had a white mother, so I'm not a racist" (17,000+ shares). "He's biracial to them when it's convenient," points out Ebony's Jamilah Lemieux. But then investigative journalist Wayne Barrett lets loose on Giuliani by reminding everyone what Rudy Giuliani knows about love (~1,500 shares). "When Giuliani said Obama 'wasnt brought up the way I was,' he meant wasnt raised by a criminal," tweets BuzzFeed's Tom Gara, who then adds, "Man, you know an op-ed is going to sting pretty hard when the second sentence says the dude married his second cousin."
The Chris Christie team also got some bad political news, with some Christie home-state supporters reportedly turning their backs to get behind Jeb Bush instead, including Jets owner Woody Johnson. "I don't remember the last time I read a story that was good for Chris Christie," admits The Hill's Jessica Taylor. Christie is joined in the "bad news bears" department by DNC's Debbie Wasserman Schultz, whose desperate bid for damage control comes off worse than the initial damage (2,800+). It's "politics at its worst and most cynical," decides BuzzFeed's Andrew Kaczynski. Hillary Clinton doesn't escape scrutiny, either, with the Wall Street Journal investigating her complex corporate ties and recent coverage on the Clinton Foundation prompting them to reconsider foreign donations "if" she runs for president.
One more political note: Psst, White House. You guys are misspelling "February."