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Patrick Goldstein and James Rainey
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It's 'Spy vs. Spy' all over again: 'Simpsons' satire pits Bill O'Reilly against Fox TV

Bill_oreilly You've gotta love Rupert Murdoch. He is the ultimate big-tent capitalist. As I reported recently, Murdoch happily helps bankroll Jim Cameron's new environmental fund as a way of guaranteeing that his film division gets two more "Avatar" films while, with equal enthusiasm, he throws money at his recently acquired Wall Street Journal, whose editorial page consistently ridicules the notion of extreme climate change, attacking the thousands of leading scientists around the world who believe that global warming is a looming threat to the planet.

The Murdoch strategy of giving with one hand while taking with the other often unhinges the ideological warriors at Fox News, who wish Murdoch would be running more comedy shows on Fox TV nastily lampooning all those Prius-driving, latte-sipping, blue-state liberals. Alas, just the opposite often happens. In case you didn't see it, "The Simpsons" most recent episode had a wonderfully snarky little moment in which a Fox News helicopter, bearing the logo "Fox News: Not Racist, But #1 With Racists," flew into the Statue of Liberty, losing one of its blades. As the chopper tumbles earthward, its captain cries, "Stop! We're unbalanced! It's not fair!"

Great "Simpsons" satire, as always. But it didn't go over so well with Fox News' Bill O'Reilly. On Monday night's "O'Reilly Factor," Papa Bear grouched: "Continuing to bite the hand that feeds part of it, Fox broadcasting once again allows its cartoon characters to run wild. ... Pinheads? I believe so."

Note the awkward sentence construction. What O'Reilly really wanted to say was, "continuing to bite the hand that feeds it," since he'd love to make the argument that Fox News revenue is driving Fox's bottom line. But of course, that's not so. Not when you have shows like "The Simpsons" and "American Idol." In fact, it's hard to imagine a show that has been more profitable over its long TV run than "The Simpsons." Which is why those pesky "Simpsons" writers get to take jabs at Fox News. And why Jim Cameron gets Fox to bankroll his environmental causes. When you make a mountain of money for Rupert, you've earned the right to exercise as much freedom of speech as you want. 

Here's the clip:


Photo: Fox News' top-rated host, Bill O'Reilly, at his Fox News headquarters in New York.

Credit: Carolyn Cole/Los Angeles Times


Comments () | Archives (16)

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Awww...Billy's got his feelings hurt by last week's episode.

Color me blue. :)

A moment to remind everyone when The Simpsons was in its golden days doing this sharp humor all the time.

IMHO, Murdoch is apolitical. He is first and foremost a shrewd businessman whose core business strategy is to serve 'underserved' markets.

This strategy is consistent with operating the Fox broadcast network, news corp.'s newspapers, and Fox News, even though they may have differing agendas.

The underserved market in his newspaper and cable news business consists of conservative consumers of news. The broadcast network seems to have aimed to serve consumers of comedies with programs that were (and still are) considered vulgar by the other major networks. Remember the debates around the appropriateness of 'married with children' when it first aired? It almost seems quaint by today's standards.

O'Reilly a pinhead? I believe so.

Mr Pinhead himself thinks its funny. I LOVE IT !!! I cant stand this Fox CLOWN or any of those blond WHORES. What a freaking JOKE this country is. But its My joke too.


I wonder what is with republicans talking heads. They can criticize minoritties, specially blacks and they don't have to answer to no one. Sometimes, they offer an apology, if misunderstood, like they were graduates of ESL, but all others need no apply. Don Imus was fired from his job for telling a joke. The lady at the golf channel was also fired for making remarks that were taken out of context, yet when it's the racist people at Fix the news network, they get a free pass. Something is rotten in Denmark, I mean , America.

I wish i could punch bill square in his face and brake his nose. He is the enemy of everything funny, freedom of expression, and all the things that make living here great, and like everything thats good there has to be something bad to balance out, hes that. Im glad the writers of the simpsons can hurt HER feelings, i hope they keep it up, over and over.

you will never see leftist lampooning on this newspaper, either. They drink the Kool aid.

"a wonderfully snarky little moment in which a Fox News helicopter, bearing the logo 'Fox News: Not Racist, But #1 With Racists,' "

Ha, ha, ha - so funny, Mr. Goldstein. That is so cutting edge.

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