When former New York Times editor Howell Raines decided to attack the Fox News Channel and blame the news outlet for President Barack Obama's shortcomings, there was bound to be a response.
And delivering that response was "The O'Reilly Factor" host Bill O'Reilly, who called his show "the signature broadcast" of the network. O'Reilly dismissed Raines as a lunatic. However he was also critical of The Washington Post for giving him an outlet to trot out his ranting.
"[I] think there is a more important thing in play here," O'Reilly said. "The Washington Post has given this guy Raines a big platform on Sunday, this coming Sunday, to print this nonsense and it is nonsense. If Raines were sitting here I could carve him up and he, Raines knows it."
But O'Reilly questioned why the Post had decided to give Raines the space in its upcoming March 14 issue to rip on his network. According to O'Reilly, this was an effort to rally the media for a last stand.
"But why - why is The Washington Post doing it?" O'Reilly asked. "Why is Raines doing it? What do they want to accomplish? Raines wants to rally the mainstream media. It's almost like the Battle of the Bulge. The war is over. They lost. He wants to rally the remnants of the left-wing mainstream media to come after Fox News and is using the health care debacle as a means to do that. That's why the story is important. And The Washington Post is giving him the fuel, is fueling up his tanks. That's what the Post is doing."
O'Reilly's guest, Bernard Goldberg, author of "A Slobbering Love Affair: The True (And Pathetic) Story of the Torrid Romance Between Barack Obama and the Mainstream Media" agreed with O'Reilly.
"Right, yeah - well, listen, what he says in the Post article is just the stuff that he says probably three times a week to his liberal pals at cocktail parties," Goldberg said. "The Post - shame on The Washington Post."
"That's right, shame on The Washington Post," O'Reilly said.
Goldberg's analysis of Raines' op-ed: It lacked facts to back up his claims and came off as nothing but a rant.
"Shame on The Washington Post, this is why - for publishing an angry rant that -- are you ready for this -- doesn't have one specific fact, not one to back up any of the arguments that he makes," Goldberg said. "Think about that. It's just -- it's just a crazy, angry wild rant with not one fact to back up his argument. Not one."
O'Reilly pointed to struggles over Obama's health care initiatives as the source of frustration for Raines.
"[A]nd this loon, and I will submit to you that Howell Raines doesn't watch ‘The Factor' and very rarely watches the Fox News Channel," O'Reilly said. "He is just angry that his whole empire has evaporated and that ObamaCare may go down."
And Goldberg also said it was the expansion of the marketplace to include Fox News and alternative outlets on the Internet that have led to the faltering of the old guard media.
"Forget the second part, that's the point - that his whole empire is evaporating," Goldberg added. "That's it right there. Not only on the one hand, the old way is gone. They don't have a monopoly anymore. But what's worse now there's Fox News. God, people actually watch Fox News. They actually read intelligent blogs. I mean, there is a lot of garbage on the Internet. They read intelligent blogs on the Internet. This is what these guys can't stand. More than anything else, this is what they can't stand."