Bill O’Reilly and Richard Dawkins — Again

Welcome, dear reader, to another episode of Great Moments in Stupidity.

We can’t imagine why, but Richard Dawkins recently wasted some moments of his life being interviewed by Bill O’Reilly. The video above is the result. It’s less than four minutes long.

The last time we wrote about such an event was Food Fight: Bill O’Reilly and Richard Dawkins. And you don’t want to miss Bill O’Reilly — Flaming, Full-Blown Creationist.

We must admit that we usually watch O’Reilly’s show, albeit with the mute button close at hand. We watch despite the fact that the man knows nothing — literally nothing! — about economics, law, or science, yet he expounds upon such topics. There are two reasons why we watch him: (1) all the other news-type shows that are on at the same time are even dumber; and (2) O’Reilly often has a few of those lovely Fox ladies on his show as guests.

It’s difficult to know what O’Reilly is good at, other than showmanship, but he seems to be doing well. Enjoy the video!

Copyright © 2011. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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27 responses to “Bill O’Reilly and Richard Dawkins — Again

  1. Well, the moon is in there, but no tides! No catchy phrase this time. Come on Bill, we need a good sound byte we can ridicule; you’re slipping!

    Seriously though, I think that there has been a lot of progress on the origin of the Universe done in the last few years. Primum movens (aka the Cosomological argument) is falling fast. There aren’t too many very compelling arguments left.

  2. Actually, O’Reilly let Dawkins speak more than he usually allows his guests to talk, and Dawkins even got a book promo.

    O’Reilly is a typical ID believer in that he knows absolutely nothing about science but has strong opinions about it. Plus, he’s almost Klinghofferian in his approach to linking natural science to atheism to evil dictators. The DI should offer him a fellowship.

  3. Aw, Bill-O, Teddy Bear, is just a big old people loving guy!

    Just ask his former-producer, Andrea Mackris. Oh, no, my mistake, that was a sexual harassment suit she filed and settled for an undisclosed amount between $2-10 million. Ah, yes, as memory serves, she kept tapes of Bill-O’s harassing phone calls which were too explicit to repeat here on Curmudgeon’s Family site.

    Yep, Bill-O, quite a guy.

  4. I cannot comprehend what Dawkins hopes to accomplish by arguing with O’Reilly.

    I thought his (wise) policy was to not debate creationists face-to-face, much less on a television show hosted by the creationist.

  5. Jack it was probably all arranged by his book publishers. Most authors do not set up their own interviews, but are handed a list of ones to attend that been arranged by the publishers.

  6. Is Dawkins ill? He had a strange, hunched-over posture throughout the video. I might look the same on camera; through naivety over camera angles, but Dawkins has too much media-savvy to look like that accidentally.

  7. Dude! If you can’t trust the O’Reilly to report on serious matters like science, how can you POSSIBLY expect him (or any other science-denying Repub) to report on important matters like the economy???

    Eventually you’ll come over to the “dark side”, Curmie.

    >:)

  8. LRA says:

    Eventually you’ll come over to the “dark side”, Curmie.

    You make it tempting, but it’s not gonna happen.

  9. Not sure if he looked ill, but mostly looked like he was leaning over heavily to the side to make sure he got fully into shot with the camera on O’Reilly. Possibly to limit the amount of editing and extra shooting, post production, they could do to the interview.

    Besides that he seems to have “his this guy an idiot but I have to be polite because I am plugging my book” expression he has.

  10. Flakey, I would have thought Dawkins pre-emptively told his publicist to nix any proposed O’Reilly appearance. O’Reilly actively pursues “controversial” and well known people to appear on his show. However, O’Reilly seemed to be exercising some self control, so maybe there was an agreement. O’Reilly gets to promote that Dawkins will be on his show and Dawkins gets to plug his book.

    But, if so what was his publicist thinking? Does he think this is a good way to get the word out to potential book buyers? I suspect anyone who watches O’Reilly who might buy Dawkins’ book already knew about it. I also suspect the bulk of O’Reilly’s viewers would never buy his book. Some would like to burn it. A few would like to burn Dawkins.

    But then, I’m not a best selling author or publicist. What do I know? IIRC, O’Reilly claims to have a significant independent and liberal viewership.

  11. “What do I know? IIRC, O’Reilly claims to have a significant independent and liberal viewership.”

    It’s entertainment, not education. People don’t necessarily watch or listen to these people because they agree with them.

  12. “…myths at the beginning of i…”
    “AHAA!!!!”
    I see this being the next big meme.

  13. You also have spill over attention, like here. People bringing up Dawkins was on O’Reilly’s show, with a new book.

  14. I think I just lost 5 IQ points watching that stupid exchange. Authors will do anything to sell a book.

  15. RetiredSciGuy

    Curmy, how can you stand watching O’Reilly? What pompous ass!

  16. Save me the IQ point loss. Did O’Reilly call scientists “fascists” like he did a few years back?

    BTW, I think O’Reilly is as clueless as the self-proclaimed “science idiot” Ann Coulter, but some far-right commentators are more “in on the scam” than you might think, especially Medved, who is a Discoveroid. When they have to interview a “Darwinist” they make sure it’s a militant atheist like Dawkins. Scientists like Ken Miller, who will expose false dichotomy, are shrewdly avoided.

  17. RetiredSciGuy

    I wish Dawkins would have asked O’Reilly to define the difference between mythology and religious belief.

  18. @LRAIf you can’t trust the O’Reilly to report on serious matters like science, how can you POSSIBLY expect him (or any other science-denying Repub) to report on important matters like the economy???

    If you can’t trust LRA to know that “consider the source” is a fallacy, how can you trust her opinions on important matters like the economy?

  19. Retired Prof

    Gabe, “consider the source” is a logical fallacy, but as a pragmatic policy it works, especially when the source says “trust me” instead of “here’s the evidence.”

    I grew up in a cult that taught that western European nations were descended from the ten tribes of Israel. Historical and archeological evidence cast insurmountable doubt over that idea even before DNA analysis demolished it entirely. I decided preachers who said such things could safely be ignored, so I also rejected their prophecy that Armageddon would gear up about 1972 and Jesus Christ would return about 1975, at which point he would cast me into a lake of fire. Nearly 40 years after the predicted onset of supernatural hostilities, I’m still here and Jesus isn’t.

    As for LRA’s specific reference to the economy, it seems to me that economic theories are all faith-based. Except for Soviet-style Marxism, they are less fantastical than eschatological theories, but still rely on the principle “Trust us. We know these policies will work. We just know they will.”

    I remain an agnostic in economic matters. No doubt many theorists can safely be ignored; I wish I knew which ones.

  20. @RSP:but as a pragmatic policy it works, especially when the source says “trust me” instead of “here’s the evidence.”

    Every source should always say “here’s the evidence” before its statements are taken seriously. And if Bill O’Reilly says the sun will rise in the east tomorrow, his opinions on evolution have no bearing on the truth or falsity of that statement. If Bill O’Reilly says–I don’t know if he does or not–“we couldn’t close the deficit even if we confiscated ALL the wealth of the top 1%”, that statement is still true regardless of what he says about evolution. (LRA knows that statement is true, she did the math.)

  21. Gabriel Hanna: Every source should always say “here’s the evidence” before its statements are taken seriously.

    in principle, I agree with you. Given the limited time I have on earth, I’m not going to demand a lengthly, evidentiary description of every policy position every given. If, every day in the past, I flap my arms and fail to fly, I can tentatively conclude that today that will happen to, without bothering to check. And if, every day, Bill O’Reilly is wrong about just about everything, I can tentatively conclude that today he will be wrong about just about everything too, without bothering to check. The same logic (but reverse outcome) being true for folk like Stephen Hawking and Richard Feynman.

    The argument from authority is fundamentally flawed. But if I don’t have the time and resources in my life to do away with it altogether, I can treat expert track records as imperfect proxies of real empirical data.

  22. @eric: But if I don’t have the time and resources in my life to do away with it altogether, I can treat expert track records as imperfect proxies of real empirical data.

    Of course that is a sensible way to behave. But that “we should accept expert opinions” is true does not imply that “we should reject the opinions of those who are not experts” is true. There are any number of valid opinions held by non-experts and any number of subjects for which experts disagree or for which the concept of expertise does not apply.

  23. Relax, Gabe. It was a joke.

  24. @LRA: I haven’t got much of a sense of humor, and I miss a lot of jokes.

  25. RetiredSciGuy

    Gabriel Hanna: “@LRA: I haven’t got much of a sense of humor, and I miss a lot of jokes.”

    That may be true, but from your posts, you appear to be very logical. In fact, rather Spock-like in that regard.

  26. BOR is a news analyst, commentator, pundit, and op-ed personality. Anything he says about anything should not be taken at face value as The TRVTH,

    He is also an entertainer and showman.

    That said, if I had to choose one of the two, and only one of the two, as my one and only source of information and analysis about economics, I’ll take BOR over Michael Moore (or Al Gore, or Pelosi, or Reid, or Durban, or Frank, or Franken, or Obama, and so on and so forth).

    On science I’d ignore them all.

  27. RetiredSciGuy

    Jack Hogan writes, “That said, if I had to choose one of the two, and only one of the two, as my one and only source of information and analysis about economics, I’ll take BOR over Michael Moore (or Al Gore, or Pelosi, or Reid, or Durban, or Frank, or Franken, or Obama, and so on and so forth).”

    Luckily, we do have Charles Krauthammer as an alternative. It’s difficult to find much respect for what any of those listed above have to say.