“And here’s the incredible kicker to the story. Rolling Stone gave ‘El Chapo’ final editing as to what went in the article,” scolded O’Reilly.
In other words, a journalistic betrayal far, far less severe than the ones that snared O’Reilly in his own media morass early last year. A number of outlets, including Mother Jones (disclosure: the wife of the Erik Wemple Blog is a staff writer there), CNN and Media Matters for America, showed how O’Reilly’s boasts about his past reportorial exploits didn’t withstand scrutiny. He either exaggerated or misremembered or lied about hairy incidents in Argentina, Los Angeles, Florida and other precincts. For example, colleagues don’t share O’Reilly’s recollections of coming under attack from protesters in the Los Angeles riots of 1992. For another example, colleagues and news reports from the time don’t share O’Reilly’s recollections of murderous mayhem in Buenos Aires protests in 1982. For yet another example, O’Reilly has claimed, against a mountain of evidence to the contrary, that he was present for the suicide of an interesting figure in the assassination of John F. Kennedy.
Faced with the significant discrepancies between his accounts and the ample historical record, O’Reilly decided to play politics. “The far left attacks on my reporting continue,” he said at one point. “There’s nothing I can do about it.”
O’Reilly is far better off riffing about how President Obama has failed to protect Americans; or how political correctness has run amok; or how great Jesse Watters is. Not that his journo-critic hypocrisy will bruise his ratings. Nothing does, as last year’s scandalito showed.