Bernie’s Q&A: Trump, Cronkite, O'Reilly, Incognito, and more! (9/27) — Premium Interactive ($4 members)
Welcome to this week’s Premium Q&A session for Premium Interactive members. I appreciate you all signing up and joining me. Thank you.
Editor's note: A couple of questions we received this week came in after the Q&A deadline, so they will be added to next week's Q&A. Also, we received some pretty long questions this week, thus some were shortened. Once again, in the future, please try to keep your questions relatively short. Thank you.
Let’s get to your questions (and my answers):
A New York Times link on Facebook documented the arrival of slavery as Slaves to Virginia in 1619, insinuating Whiteys involvement in importing African Slaves to America. I responded with the fact that the first African Slaves were brought to the Americas by the Spanish and Portugese after Columbus discovery. I am of Italian and Puerto Rican Heritage. Given the narrative promoted by the media my question is: Are Hispanics White Europeans or "people of color". Your thoughts? -- Joseph V.
Please don't take this the wrong way, Joseph. But why should we care? What difference would it make -- unless you were filling out a job application and you thought you might benefit from checking "person of color." I've grown weary of this identity stuff. And I'm guessing, my friend, so have you. Take care.
When I was too young to understand politics, I remember my uncle yelling at the TV that Walter Cronkite was a lying piece of sh*t. Now, as I read about the NYT's continued problems with "integrity" and "credibility" (irresponsible reporting, so called “sources," etc.), I’m thinking, who the hell really believes the Times, or Cronkite, Or Murrow, EVER had any “integrity” to begin with? We couldn’t fact check back then, we didn’t have access to the world in our pockets like today. So how the hell will we ever know these entities weren’t full of S*** for the past 100 years? I’m also finding out for myself that it’s not just the nefarious things they write or report, but what they omit! Where am I wrong? Because right now, I’m one pissed off American! -- Respectfully “Right Wing Ralphy”
I'm curious, Ralphy: How did your uncle know Walter Cronkite was a liar? What inside, behind the scenes information, did he have? Could it be that Cronkite wasn't giving your uncle the kind of biased news he wanted to hear. Could it be the problem wasn't Cronkite or Murrow -- but your uncle.
Listen Ralphy, I believe there's too much bias in the media just as you do. And yes, Murrow had a point of view which he expressed at the end of his show. When we agree with a point of view, we like what we hear. When we don't, we think the person delivering the news is a liar.
Keep an open mind. When they get it wrong, let's call them out. But let's not suggest that they're all a bunch of liars and always have been. It weakens, not strengthens, our arguments against real bias.
Hi Bernie. I really look forward to the web site each week. Regarding your column from Monday, Trump Could Lose? To Biden...Maybe To Sanders or Warren....No Chance. The country might be sick of Trump and his mouth and his attitude... I find myself agreeing with you a lot. But the Country wont commit suicide either. -- Michael C.
Good chance you're right, Michael. All I'm saying, is don't bet that even someone like Warren or Sanders couldn't beat Donald Trump. It's more than SIMPLY POSSIBLE. A lot of moderates detest him -- and may hold their nose and vote for a quasi socialist. So let's wait and see.
Regarding Monday's column, everything you wrote about Trump is 100% true, but you keep leaving something out. Yes, Trump is bombastic, loud, egotistical etc. Have you taken a look at the Dems running for their nomination? Setting aside Trump and the policies being advanced by the Dems, this field isn't exactly loaded with Lincoln quality candidates. Tell me which one of these dolts do you want to see replace him? In fact, as deplorable as she is, (love using that word for her) Hillary is still their best candidate. -- Dennis C.
Easy question, Dennis: Which one of those dolts do I want to see replace Trump. None of them. Someone's got to win. I prefer the Republican. But it'll be without my vote. And just so you understand, I won't be voting for the Democrat either. That I'll be sitting out the presidential vote is not on me. It's on Donald Trump and whoever his opponent is.
Sir, You are the rare voice of objectivity in media. I hope this venture is doing well as it is needed. In 2016 almost 63 million people voted for Trump. I've not seen a single Democrat running to replace him appeal to those voters. In fact they are pushing policies that drive those voters closer to Trump. At the same time many of the policies they discuss are too extreme for the voters they did get in 2016. How can any Democrat expect to beat Trump without attracting some of his 2016 voters and keeping the moderates that want to support them? -- David E.
Excellent analysis and question, David.
I think some people who voted for Trump the last time around figured, lets give something new a try. He's not the same old politician we've been getting forever. But I'm not at all convinced he'll hang on to those voters. If he loses just a few -- in key states -- that can cost him the election. At the same time (and here's where we disagree), I don't believe anyone who voted for Hillary will now vote for Trump. His only hope, the way I see it, is that all of his base turns out and more than a few Democrats sit out the election, because they're moderates who won't vote for Elizabeth Warren (should she get the nomination). Stay tuned.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but a while back during one of your Real Sports stories, didn't some football player suddenly pick you up over his shoulder (with you somewhat protesting) and start running with you? If my memory is correct, did you know ahead of time he was going to do that? And who was that? Thanks. -- Albert
You're half right. It was not a football player. It was a guy who holds the most Guinness Book of Records ... records. And NO, I did not know he was going to do that. And when I learned that my producer did know, I almost murdered him. But it apparently was memorable and that, I hope, was a good thing.
Editor's Note: It took a while to find, but here's the video:
The Trump haters have now gone too far and have put his presidency in jeopardy, at least from the perspective of National Security and getting things done with foreign leaders. This whistleblower has made it almost impossible for a foreign leader to believe he's having a confidential, private discussion with Trump. I'm betting when the transcript is made public (Editor's note: This question was submitted on 9/25), like most of the other "evidence" of malfeasance, this will be about nothing. But the damage has already been done. What is Pelosi's political theater ["we will begin looking into impeachment"] based on? No one has seen the transcript! Seems she had to appease her far left rabid dogs, led by that nutjob AOC. I think this will blow up in their faces and hope the American people will vote these Dems out of office. -- John M.
Let's see how this plays out.
Great “Off The Cuff” this week; but do you also believe Trump has had and now has implemented an “Impeach me” strategy that he hopes will totally blow up in the Dems faces? Hard to believe any President would use that play, but he seems ballsy enough to use it. -- Scotty G.
I've heard the theory, Scotty, but I don't believe it. As you say, "Hard to believe any president would use that play ..." He's nuts, but not that nuts.
Regarding your recent column on the growing antisemitism in this country, I'm curious how often you, as a Jewish public figure in the media, have had to deal with antisemitism. Thanks -- Jen R.
There's been some, but nothing serious. But the goons on social media were all over my religion when I was on with O'Reilly, saying negative things about Donald Trump. On that subject: Trump can't be responsible for everything his supporters say and do. But he does attract a troubling number of out and out bigots. Just sayin'.
Did your Real Sports story this week on Richie Incognito mark the first time you had an opportunity to ask an interview subject about their desire to cut off a dead person's head for research purposes? And was that sort of a journalistic "bucket list" item that you'd secretly always hoped to be able to ask someone? Because that would totally be on my list. -- John D.
Editor's Note: Below is the exchange:
John, D ... I'll answer your question only after you tell me when I can catch your act at Chuckles the Clown Comedy Club or the Make Me Smile or I'll Kill You Laugh Factory. I saw your act at the Catch a Rising Comedian Ha Ha House in Akron, Ohio a few years back. You were a riot. I mean that literally. The audience rioted when they found out that Seinfeld cancelled and you were standing in for him.
Bernie, if the media did its job and were equally tough on Democrats and Republics and held both parties accountable for their actions, which elected leaders do you think would have no chance of staying in office and which leaders do you think would have never been elected in the first place? -- JM
That's a tough one. But let me focus on one current example. The media are all over Trump's connection to Ukraine. The phone call and all that. But not nearly as interested in Biden's relationship with Ukraine -- and how he might have used muscle to protect his son. I'm writing about this and will publish very soon.
That said, here's a general rule: They will (almost) always be tougher on Republicans than on Democrats. They will (almost) always salivate more when going after a conservative than a liberal. But you knew all that, right?
Over the years, since Bias came out, have you heard from many liberal-leaning journalists working for liberal-leaning news networks or papers who've told you, off the record, that you were absolutely right about everything? -- Skip S.
I've heard that the O'Reilly Factor was rarely aired live, and was almost always filmed earlier in the day. Because of that, were there times when (during your segment) you speculated on a developing story, only to have things change quite a bit (and your commentary undercut by new facts) by the time the episode aired? If so, wasn't that pretty frustrating? -- Steve
You're right about taping early, Steve, but I don't recall any times when upcoming events got in the way. If Bill knew that there was going to be a late news conference, or something important might happen after the usual taping time, we'd just go live that day. There were some frustrations, but not about that.
I've heard some interesting allegations via conservative websites about Christine Blasey-Ford:
Her father supposedly approached Brett Kavanaugh's father at the country club they both belong to, and he told Mr. Kavanaugh that he actually SUPPORTED the Kavanaugh nomination to the Supreme Court (thus casting doubt on his own daughter's testimony).
There's a video showing Ms. Blasey-Ford's attorney admitting NOT that Blasey-Ford committed perjury, but that she definitely was motivated because she feared Kavanaugh would help overturn Roe v. Wade.
Blasey-Ford's best friend, Leland Keyser, was pressured by a retired FBI agent to actually commit perjury so Blasey-Ford's testimony would sound more credible during the hearings.
Are any of these stories credible? I question them because only right-wing websites tell them, and I don't see much independent corroboration. And if they're true, why hasn't there been an FBI investigation into perjury and slander? -- Sincerest Regards From The Emperor
I've heard them too, Emperor. But I have no idea if they're true. And that's a problem: With so much partisan crap out there masquerading as news, we no longer know what to believe.
That said, when only right wing websites report smarmy allegations, I get suspicious. Sure, you can make a case that liberal news organizations are so biased that they'd ignore such information. But Fox News, the hard news part of Fox, is really good. They'd report those stories, wouldn't they?
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