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The way to crush the middle class is to grind them between the millstones of taxation and inflation. – Vladimir Lenin

IU School of Journalism Humiliated by Bogus Bill O’Reilly Study

Posted by iusbvision on March 3, 2009

Common sense would tell anyone, that if you are going to take on Bill O’Reilly with a full frontal assault there are a few things that you should keep in mind. Don’t spin, don’t engage in the ridiculous, don’t make half cocked assertions, and don’t try to mislead the folks. To sum that all up one could say above all, don’t be a pinhead.

Unfortunately two professors with the IU Bloomington School of Journalism decided not to make good use of common sense when they posted their “study” attacking Bill O’Reilly on the internet. O’Reilly had a ball with these two professors and Indiana University on his program. Odds are by tomorrow night the segment will be archived on YouTube forever.

The two professors who produced this unscholarly document are Mike Conway and Maria Elizabeth Grabe. I just finished reading the study and it is such an ideological hit piece that I was laughing while I read it as it was so ‘over the top’ ridiculous. It used every dirty trick used by a radical ideologue that one would typically see on an unregulated internet message board.

Let us begin with the very first deception in the study:

O’Reilly employed the name calling device almost once every seven seconds.

What didn’t come out till later is that Prof. Conway and Grabe included political labels such as “Democrat and Republican” as name calling devices. Is this what you have in mind, or is that the narrative that comes to mind when you see the term “name calling device”?

Perhaps someone should remind Conway and Grabe that words mean things and in the world of journalism, context is everything. When one distorts context or fails to use it in good faith it creates a story that gives a “false light” and if the story meets certain criteria it is considered “false light libel”.

Other example of “name calling propaganda” cited by the study is when O’Reilly chastised a journalist for using a “buried headline”. Burying the lead is one of the most common forms of media bias.

I wrote a paper on “burying the lead” bias. For example: A Washington Post article told how law enforcement working for the Bush Administration had improperly used the Patriot Act to obtain the private records of about two dozen American citizens and The Post told us that the Attorney General was not ruling out criminal charges. The unwritten narrative was clear; the Bush Administration is criminally violating your privacy. Many paragraphs deep into the story it told you that these mistakes had been caught by the Inspector General, whose job it is to find these kinds of errors and these two dozen mistakes were out of over 1500 legal uses of the Patriot Act that year, or an error rate on the new law of slightly over 1%. In light of those facts it changes your attitude of the story doesn’t it?

There is no way that Conway and Grabe could not have understood what O’Reilly was talking about when he used the term “buried lead” as burying the lead bias is one of the most talked about bias techniques in journalism. The only reason to simply refer to this as “name calling propaganda” is because they wanted to impress their far left peers by publishing a ‘study’ to damage Bill O’Reilly.

Another example of name calling they counted is when O’Reilly used the term “Kool-Aide Drinkers” when used in conjunction with far left or far right ideologues. “Kool-Aide Drinkers” is a term commonly used term for people who are hardcore political ideologues who believe that their side can do no wrong and the other side can do no right. Anyone who engages in political or cultural discourse becomes familiar with these types of people very quickly. This term can also fall into the same category as shtick or a shows techno-babble. While the term “Kool-Aide Drinker” may seem like pejorative name calling at first glance, it is merely a mildly entertaining term that describes a group of people that almost everyone has had to deal with at one time or another. When viewed in context it is not in the same class as calling someone a jerk or an ass without dealing with their argument as this study clearly implies.

Like any radical leftist arguing on an internet message board, Conway and Grabe compared Bill O’Reilly to whom else …wait for it….because this is just too predictable… you guessed it, a Nazi propagandist who they describe as:

His broadcasts became heavily anti-Semitic and he was one of the few apologists for Adolf Hitler and the reign of terror brought about by the Nazi party in Germany.

Mini Update – The Nazi propagandist they referred to is Father Coughlin who was a far left advocate of “social justice” and redistribution of wealth, a view that is common among leftist academia. Ironic isn’t it?


Coughlin had a well-developed theory of what he termed “social justice,” predicated on monetary “reforms.” He began as an early Roosevelt supporter, coining a famous expression, that the nation’s choice was between “Roosevelt or ruin.” Later in the 1930s he turned against FDR and became one of the president’s harshest critics. His program of “social justice” was a very radical challenge to capitalism and to many of the political institutions of his day.

Coughlin’s magazine was called “Social Justice”. He later turned against FDR because he believed FDR didn’t go far enough in the government take over of society and the economy.

When someone makes any kind of comparison to a monster like a Nazi, the comparison becomes what is commonly referred to as a Reductio ad Hitlerum.

A Reductio ad Hitlerum is rationally unsound for two different reasons: As a wrong direction fallacy (a type of questionable cause), it inverts the cause-effect relationship between why a villain and an idea might be criticized; conversely, as guilt by association (a form of association fallacy), it illogically attempts to shift culpability from a villain to an idea regardless of who is espousing it and why. Specific instances of Reductio ad Hitlerum are also frequently likely to suffer from the fallacy of begging the question or take the form of slippery slope arguments, which are frequently (though not always) false as well.

Any comparison to a Nazi propagandist creates a very nasty negative narrative whether it is explicitly stated or not. This is why the far left uses these kind of arguments to the point of being silly on internet message boards, and now IU Journalism School studies. If they can reduce you to a Nazi then no matter how accurate what you say is no longer matters; you can’t be credible because you are like the Nazi.

According to this study here is another example of Bill O’Reilly’s evil propaganda:

Testimonial [testimonial propaganda] involves a respected person endorsing or rejecting an idea or person. For example, in a segment about the new Pope, O’Reilly (4/19/05) referred to him as a good friend of the late Pope John Paul. Thus, through suggested friendship, the former Pope is called on to testify to the legitimacy of the new Pope. Testimonial can also be achieved through negative connotation when someone with a bad reputation is presented as endorsing a person or idea.

Vile propaganda technique or perhaps a newsworthy detail? The fact that Cardinal Ratzinger was a close friend of the former Pope is newsworthy just as if it were said that Ratzinger was a philosophical enemy to the pope or if they genuinely didn’t like each other.  What if Jennifer Aniston came to my birthday party and the South Bend Tribune reported it.  Was The Tribune reporting it to call on to my legitimate star power to make it appear that she was endorsing me for propaganda value; or just reporting a newsworthy fact? What do you think? I report, you decide.

There is so much ammunition in this ‘study’ but I will wrap up with this:

Criminals and terrorists were consistently presented as evil in that they endanger human life, but evil was also achieved through moral violation. Here are a few examples: University of Colorado professor Ward Churchill was described as following a Nazi philosophy, hating America, justifying murder, and as a traitor who comforts the enemy (3/2/05;2/7/05; 2/1/05). Illegal aliens were described as dangerous, out of control, causing chaos, and threatening the American way of life (4/7/05; 4/26/05; 4/25/05).

For example, Martin Luther King, Jr. was described (1/17/05) as a hero because he had noble goals in opposing violence and correcting injustice.

Remember how I stated above that in journalism context is everything? The statements above become priceless when viewed in context.

Ward Churchill was a professor who stated the people who died on 9/11 were “little Eichmann’s”. Adolf Eichmann was the man who designed Hitler’s “final solution” for the Jews.  The case Churchill made was clear. Our 3,000 dead were more then just a legitimate target, they deserved it for furthering capitalism and free enterprise which Ward Churchill loathes. Ward Churchill and others who spoke out with such nonsense were used by Al-Jezeera and Al-Qeada for propaganda purposes. That propaganda gives aid and comfort to the enemy. Isn’t it interesting that Conway and Grabe see no hypocrisy in using a Nazi reference against Bill O’Reilly but make out the man who refers to our dead as “little Eichmann’s” as the victim of mean ole Bill O’Reilly.

Now one must ask, why did Bill O’Reilly say that the illegal alien problem was “dangerous, out of control, causing chaos”? We certainly need to ask that very important question because obviously Conway and Grabe simply didn’t care. Bill O’Reilly has covered story after story of criminal illegal aliens who have killed people, raped and driven while intoxicated. These criminal aliens had long records and were never deported. Such a situation indeed is dangerous, out of control and causes chaos in the lives of the victims.

As for the last example of Bill O’Reilly’s evil propaganda cited by this ‘study’, the Martin Luther King example quoted above, is just too much. Conway and Grabe had already reached the point of being laughable before they tossed this in. May I see a show of hands of those who do NOT believe that Dr. King was a hero? Apparently, according to the IU School of Journalism, pointing out this self evident truth is engaging in propaganda on par with Nazi monsters. I wonder what the IU Black Faculty & Staff Council will have to say about that?

The study had referenced communications theorist Carl Hovland. I found that to be most amusing because Hovland is known for what is sometimes called “attitude change propaganda theory”. One form of this is when only some of the facts are given or those partial facts are misrepresented with an attitude that deliberately creates an unspoken narrative in the reader’s mind (O’Reilly the Nazi propagandist or like the Washington Post example above). This study, which plays so fast and loose with the facts, context and definitions is a quintessential example of Hovland’s theory in practice.

Is the state of academia so bad and so partisan, that they have reduced themselves to writing preposterous propaganda to each other to help keep themselves convinced? Congratulations Mike Conway and Maria Elizabeth Grabe, you just managed to get in my upcoming book.

UPDATE – O’Reilly hit IU again today (3-3-09) on his program. Considering the ammunition Conway and Grabe gave him who can find fault with it? Amy Adams’ comments were featured on The Factor during the IU segment. She told O”Reilly how radical many of the J school profs are. The alumni will not be pleased with this situation, but I suppose it is better that they know the kind of silly propaganda that some professors are trying to peddle as scholarship these days.

For our Florida readers: Bill O’Reilly will be speaking in Palm Beach at a fundraiser for the charity Be sure to attend if you can to support a good cause.

9 Responses to “IU School of Journalism Humiliated by Bogus Bill O’Reilly Study”

  1. billisBS said

    oh. someone just made this up and posted it to a blog or something.
    At first i thought that this was LEGITIMATE journalism, when actually, it’s just another opinion passed off as fact. Good try Bill, but until something that spews from your mouth is peer-reviewed and published, i`ll take their words over your.
    PS: adding BS to the news and calling it no-spin doesn’t make sense, and it alludes to the entire theme of the show(which is BS).
    Your show is for hicks, rednecks, and people who dropped out in grade 10.

    [Actually, Bill O’Reilly did not write this post, we are a student and alumni blog made up of people who went to Indiana University. The content is ours and does not belong to Fox News or Bill O’Reilly. Of course if you were reading for comprehension you would have fingured that out. By the way, according to peer reviewed studies 80% of peer reviewed studies are shown to be flawed by other peer reviewed studies. There is a peer reviewed study somewhere to show you almost anything you like.

    The thought process of many professors has diminished to such a level, that in many cases all peer reviewed means is that you found some group of professors somewhere and made them happy.

    By the way, if you just bothered to follow the link you would see that the paper is not peer reviewed, it is nothing more than a ideological hit piece that is large on misleading narrative and short on clear facts. The hoops and twisted logic they are using to get to the conclusions they use are common in what you would find on a far left internet message-board.

    If you are so proud of your comments, why do you post anonymously? – Editor]

  2. […] IU School of Journalism Humiliated by Bogus Bill O’Reilly Study […]

  3. mathew chamgeni said

    iam tanzanian boy 27year,iam veery interested to study on line

  4. Missionary James said

    Well….it has been over 6-months since the EDITOR (above) asked BILLIE-BS (above) why BILLY-BS refused to use His REAL IDENTITY when responding to the BILL O’REILLY piece with nonfactual, unsupported, stereo-typical and ideological statements and NAME CALLING. I guess BILLY-BS’s user name is truly and accurately indicative of His deceptive, liberal, and Anti-American character and cowardly ways ….. BILLIE-BS everyone! What an appropriate Title to give one’s self!

  5. Missionary James said

    P.S. A Word from God to ALL BILLIE-BS LIBERALS

    2Pe 2:12-19 But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption; (13) And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you; (14) Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children: (15) Which have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness; (16) But was rebuked for his iniquity: the dumb ass speaking with man’s voice forbad the madness of the prophet. (17) These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever. (18) For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error. (19) While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage.

  6. […] IU School of Journalism Humiliated by Bogus Bill O’Reilly Study […]

  7. Paul Geer said

    Well, I’m not a big fan of Bill O’Reilly, some times he’s right on, but then he can be unbelievably wrong too. All of his facts are from the “main stream” media news, so that means I have to be careful about what he says to begin with. Basically, he is a news commentator, which in that sense is OK but his “no spin” goes right out the window because the very news he’s commenting on is spin or puff pieces. If he did his own news gathering, investigating, Bill’s show would be different I believe, more factual. Bills “name calling” means nothing to me, for example; pinhead, how many times have I heard Democrats speak and call them pinheads to my self. Bill O’ Reilly can bring forward some of the most hard hitting news and unveil some of the most guarded secrets of the left. Yet Bill himself can be somewhat left-wing by saying “I’m Looking Out For You”, or “what good is government unless it’s doing something for you” which he said on Bill’s radio show on Westwood 1. He believes big corp is evil yet doesn’t care for unions. Bill completely dropped the question on Obama’s birth place on on (looks like copied several times) news paper clipping showing Obama was born in Hawaii when we haven’t seen his actual birth certificate. Obama’s family even says he was born in Kenya. Obama’s wife Michele stated “Obama’s home country, Kenya” to a group.

    I don’t know folks, Bill O’Reilly may be seen as a Conservative but to me, he’s left of center, someplace… but still O’Reilly’s TV show still calls out the “radical” left wing for what they are, but also calls out the “radical” right, which if you think about it there is no such thing if your following Bill’s description. One example is when he was discussing the man who killed a doctor at an abortion clinic. Bill O’Reilly called it a “radical right-wing” act. I disagree, the most “radical” right-wing thing you could do is nothing. Clearly “radical” to be sure, and left-wing.

    So, what are the left-wingers worried about? Lot of times O’Reilly is one of them.

    [Hi Paul,

    I think you are reading just a tad bit into the “were looking out for you ” thing. It’s roots come from what the Founders intended journalism to be, the people’s watchdog and the “4th branch of government”. It was peoples meant sincerely, not marxist “peoples” which as you know means the rule of man and not the rule of law.

    As far as O’Reilly, he is right about 85+% of the time and yes sometimes he in inconsistent and really blows it, but lets be fair. O’Reilly has thousands of hours of time on the air both TV and radio. Over time there are going to be slip ups and mistakes. I certainly make them from time to time. Compare O’Reilly to an outfit like the New York Times and it is no contest, O’Reilly is much more credible.

    As far as the Birth Certificate thing, I really need you to hear me here. Anyone who has done the research knows that the piece of paper he released was a COLB (cert of live birth) which is not a birth certificate. However the Sec. of State for the State of Hawaii has said that he has seen the original and it is on record. So that is good en bough for me. With that said, why would Obama spend so much on fat lawyers to keep it from being publicly released, as he has done with his school records etc etc? It is because for all his talk about transparency, he is just not. The other reason is that; think about who brings up the birther thing at certain points in the news cycle, it is none other than Bob Gibbs the White House Press Secretary. The White House keeps the “birther” thing alive because they know that they can use it against Republicans who fall for it. This is one of the oldest forms of political triangulation in the book. It is a calculated distraction designed to paint his political adversaries as extreme, when in reality is is the actions of Obama that are unprecedented. The best way to hurt Obama on the birther story is to drop it.

    But in the end, this article is not about how much I like or don’t like Bill O’Reilly. It is about two IU professors who made a conscious decision to engage in journalistic and academic malpractice and to gave the IU school of journalism the reputation of being a smear machine. – Chuck]

  8. Paul Geer said

    Sorry Chuck for my prattle on Bill O’Reilly, I guess as the old saying goes; better than nothin’. Bill’s OK but he is still media in the sense of main stream, yet, would not fit-in with Morning Joe on MSNBC as Pat Buchanan does.

    Yes, I agree that bogus Bill O’Reilly “study” could have given IU School of Journalism a reputation of being a smear machine. However, when dumb is dumb, there isn’t much I can say but stupid! No doubt IU School of Journalism needs to be a shining example of real journalism, instead of just another, willing participant, left-wing hit-squad.

    I’m not a political guy, sometimes when politics will get a candidate votes, it does the opposite for me. For example; the Obama birth place question was brought up during the presidential campaign, the first thing I thought was good point, with a name he picked for his official carer, certainly brought up questions in my mind. Just one of the many things made me vote for McCain. Instead, this got him votes. ??? How? Anyway, the question came up and I hope regardless of politics that somebody will get to the bottom of this important issue soon and charge the whole Democrat party for treason if the little man-child is not a citizen of our country.

    [Hi Paul,

    I would sure be surprised to find out that the State of Hawaii lied to protect Obama. Why? There are too many state employees who have access to those records. If there was no original birth certificate someone in that office would have leaked it and if there was ever discovery everyone in that office would be compelled to spill the beans under oath. That is just too many people who would have to risk jail to keep a secret for Obama. Keep in mind that this lack of transparency matches Obama’s pattern of behavior. – Chuck]

  9. Paul Geer said

    Chuck, I’m surprised by the level secrecy now the left has kept so far and so long, and masquerade it as Republican doings. I’ll still keep apprised of the “birth-er” thing, nothing comes of it, fine. There is one thing to consider though, and that is not every one in Hawaii would be involved, it takes only one person to make the changes. Also, it was discovered in the Philippines a record of Obama birth and a possible name change. I’m just saying all of this, false or true, needs to be checked out. I agree it should not be a major focal point of the TEA parties and the Republicans.

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