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Posts tagged ‘Bill O’Reilly’

McConnell, Boehner to IRS: End ‘Intimidation and Harassment’ of Tea Party Groups.


Top Republicans in the House and the Senate insist the Obama administration is using new proposed IRS rules to continue its “harassment and intimidation” of conservative groups, and they are calling on the new IRS Commissioner to abandon the plans.

In a joint letter issued Wednesday to IRS Commissioner John Koskinen, House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell also contend that, much like the agency’s targeting of tea party groups which stifled their influence in the last two election cycles, the latest round of rules are a new attempt to silence them in the run-up to the 2014 elections.

The rule, which hasn’t been finalized, could limit spending from outside groups officially classified as non-profit social welfare organizations.

The groups spent more than $310 million over the two-year 2012 election cycle, according to the Center for Responsive Politics that tracks campaign finance. Some $265 million of that — about 85 percent — was from organizations that align with Republicans, according to the watchdog group.

“It is our view that finalizing this proposed rule would make intimidation and harassment of the administration’s political opponents the official policy of the IRS and would allow the Obama Administration to use your agency as a partisan tool,” the lawmakers wrote in the letter signed by nine other colleagues.

The new IRS rules would prevent 501(c)(4) tax-exempt groups from running television ads, organizing get-out-the-vote efforts and voter registration drives, and handing out literature on political issues.

The GOP lawmakers contend the new rules amount to an assault by the administration on First Amendment rights.

“You are now left with a simple choice,” they wrote. “Reform the IRS and root out any hint of corruption or targeting of political opponents, starting by withdrawing this proposed rule, or allow the administration to use the agency as a means to infringe on the constitutionally protected right to free speech.”

In the letter the lawmakers also say that congressional investigators have uncovered evidence that the draft rules had been under consideration for at least two years, “suggesting a political motivation well outside the bounds of the agency’s mission.”

The IRS has asked for public comment on whether the same definition should apply to labor unions and business groups. Many Democrats say the IRS should adopt a strict definition that follows the word “exclusively” in the tax code.

Meanwhile, a House Ways and Means Committee investigation is underway this week into the IRS targeting scandal. Koskinen told reporters Wednesday after the hearing that the singling out of conservative organizations for heightened scrutiny would be “intolerable,” and vowed the IRS is not doing so now.

“It won’t happen going forward,” Koskinen said, according to Fox News. “And to the extent that people suffered accordingly, I apologize for that.”

On Thursday, GOP super lawyer Cleta Mitchell told representatives that the systematic effort to delay the processing of grass-roots groups applications for nonprofit status continues to occur.

The proposed rule being discussed would define political activity broadly, including voter registration drives and voter guides. The proposal has drawn more than 22,000 comments so far, mostly opposing the change.

The proposed rule doesn’t say how much political involvement would be enough to disqualify groups from obtaining and keeping social welfare status, and that’s an issue the IRS would have to resolve before it implemented the change.

Koskinen also said he would cooperate with all six separate investigations into the scandal.
President Barack Obama said in an interview Sunday with Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly that the targeting was inappropriate but insisted there was no corruption in the agency

“There was some boneheaded decisions out of a local office,” Obama said, adding that there was “not even a smidgen of corruption.”

Since the proposed changes were announced in November, conservative groups have been vociferous in their opposition, saying it’s the administration’s latest attempt to silence them.

Mitchell, who represents tea party groups that were targeted by the agency for scrutiny, said last week that the new rules demonstrate that the IRS is a “rogue, lawless agency” and “the enforcement arm for the Democratic Party.”

Related stories: 

 

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

 

By Melanie Batley

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Cleta Mitchell: IRS Targeting of Conservatives Continues.


Image: Cleta Mitchell: IRS Targeting of Conservatives ContinuesCleta Mitchell testifies on Capitol Hill on Feb. 6. On the panel with Mitchell are, from left, Catherine Engelbrecht, Founder of King Street Patriots, Becky Gerritson, Founder and President Wetumpka Tea Party, Inc., and Jay Sekulow, Chief Counsel American Center for Law and Justice.

By David A. Patten

Explosive testimony lit up a House hearing on the IRS targeting scandal Thursday, as GOP super lawyer Cleta Mitchell told representatives that the systematic effort to delay the processing of grass-roots groups applications for nonprofit status continues to occur.

Mitchell represents several grass-roots conservative organizations whose applications under sections 501C3 and 501C4 of the internal revenue code were delayed for years in the run-up to the 2012 election. She said that targeting had not stopped.

Editor’s Note: Govt Prohibited From Helping Seniors (Shocking) 

GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina told Fox News on Thursday that the effort to suppress conservative voices was “almost Nixonian,” noting President Obama said in a recent interview that there was “not even a smidgeon” of corruption involved in the apparent IRS effort to chill conservative groups after the tea party movement emerged in February 2009.

“How could you possibly say that when Lois Lerner in charge of tax-exempt groups pled the fifth?” Graham asked.

Also testifying Monday was Jay Sekulow, head of the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ). ACLJ officials also contend the IRS targeting continues to this day.

There were 41 grassroots groups named as plaintiffs in the ACLJ lawsuit alleging widespread abuses of the First Amendment rights of assembly and free speech by the Obama administration and the IRS. Of those, 13 still have not yet received adjudication of their request for non-profit status.

The oldest of those 13 pending applications for nonprofit status dates back to December 2009, French says. That would mean at least one group has been sidelined through two election cycles, with a third rapidly approaching.

Of the 13 groups in limbo, two sought 501c3 non-profit status and the other 11 sought 501c4 status as “social welfare” organizations, French said.

According to the ACLJ, five other groups joined the lawsuit after withdrawing their nonprofit applications due to frustration over the IRS approval process. Also, two of the plaintiffs refused to answer IRS questions that they considered unconstitutional, which led to the IRS closing their nonprofit applications without further consideration.

The proposed new IRS regulations seek to limit 501c4 groups’ activities. Conservative activists say the rules have exacerbated their sense of uncertainty and intimidation.

“Of course that has a chilling effect,” says French. “And until it is decisively and emphatically stopped through public, legal accountability, that chilling effect is likely to linger.”

Mitchell, who represents grass-roots conservative activists not included in the ACLJ lawsuit, recently echoed the view that conservative groups continue to be singled out in the run-up to the 2014 elections.

“The IRS is still, very deliberately targeting conservative organizations and subjecting them to additional intense and burdensome scrutiny — and this has not stopped,” she said. “This is still ongoing.”

According to House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp of Michigan, the new proposed IRS regulations, which were first unveiled in November, appear to single out as political activity the precise sorts of programs tea party organizations typically run: Candidate forums, voter registration drives, and distributions of voter guides.

In a column published in the February edition of Newsmax Magazine, the Wall Street Journal’s Kimberley A. Strassel contends that conservative groups are much more likely to become ensnared in the new proposed limitations.

She notes that neither unions, which conduct most of their activities as 501c5 groups, nor 501c3 organizations such as the liberal League of Women Voters Education Fund, are affected. That’s because the rules were not written to apply to those types of nonprofits.

The reaction of conservative activists has grown increasingly strident. Everett Wilkinson, chairman of the grass-roots National Liberty Federation organization, tells Newsmax:

“Never before have we seen such attitudes and actions taken in America by an administration or government body.

“They are intentionally trying to silence the voices of millions of Americans, who all they want is to be heard.”

Wilkinson said his organization is closely following nine critical Senate races that could flip either way. But the fear of some that they could become targets of the IRS is having an impact, he says.

“Through this intimidation a lot of people have said, ‘I don’t know if I want to risk the IRS or the Treasury Department or whoever they’re going to send after me,’” he says.

Recent remarks by Democrats appear to have exacerbated conservatives’ concern that the IRS has been politicized.

In January, New York Democratic Sen. Charles Schumer urged the IRS to “redouble [its] efforts immediately” to constrain the tea parties.

Urgent: Is Obama Telling the Truth on IRS, Benghazi Scandals? 

During his Super Bowl interview with Fox News host Bill O’Reilly, President Obama said there was “not even a smidgeon of corruption” involved. This despite the fact that the FBI has yet to release the findings of its investigation.

Such remarks appear aimed at energizing a Democratic base that has seen tea party nonprofits as fair game ever since the Citizens United ruling made it easier for corporations to get involved in politics.

Curiously, the IRS targeting has had relatively little impact on the major activist groups that raise millions of dollars each year.

A recent New York Times story reported that four major conservative organizations — FreedomWorks, Tea Party Patriots, the Club for Growth Action Fund, and the Senate Conservatives Fund — are actually outraising their more establishment GOP counterparts such as Crossroads GPS.

But unlike the big groups that can afford to “lawyer up,” it is the smaller activist organizations all over the country — with names like Linchpins of Liberty, Colorado 9/12 Project, First State Patriots, Mid-South Tea Party, and American Patriots Against Government Excess — who have been ensnared by the long arm of the IRS.

Those smaller organizations are believed to play a key role in getting out the vote in local neighborhoods.

Wilkinson praises the myriad local tea parties as “the most effective system out there, compared to the Republican consulting groups that get millions of dollars in TV ads and radio ads.

“They put every dollar they have in, and their heart and soul. They’re getting people to the polls for maybe pennies on the dollar.”

How those groups will fare as the tax laws they must comply with grow increasingly complex and demanding is open to question.

French says the proposed IRS rules will mean “an enormous amount of activity undertaken on the basis of issues, is now re-characterized as political, and now subject to limits.

“That essentially takes a group’s ability to engage in issue advocacy and then completely neuters it in the days and the weeks leading up to an election, by defining political activity so very broadly,” he adds.

When the targeting controversy first broke last May, President Obama said the IRS targeting was “inexcusable,” and added: “I’m angry about it.”

The “social welfare” and issue-advocacy 501c4 organizations have received special attention in part because their donors’ names generally do not have to be disclosed.

The controversy over IRS targeting dates back to May 2013. That’s when former IRS executive Lois Lerner revealed that IRS personnel had acted in what she called an “absolutely inappropriate” way by holding up the non-profit applications of groups with the terms “tea party,” “patriot,” or “9/12” in their names.

The IRS asked the targeted groups to answer intrusive questionnaires regarding their activities — ranging from information on their members’ employers, donors lists, and even in one case how much time a particular organization spent “on prayer groups.”

At the time, GOP Sen. Orrin G. Hatch of Utah, the ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, received several complaints. He wrote a letter of inquiry to then-acting IRS Commissioner Stephen T. Miller.

Miller wrote back with assurances that no conservative groups were being targeted. But not long after Lerner’s disclosure, Miller was asked to resign.

The Obama administration has portrayed the IRS affair as a limited imbroglio involving a few rogue agents in the IRS’s Cincinnati office.

But Mitchell says several of her clients were told a final decision on their applications would be handed down from IRS offices in Washington, D.C.

Not every grass-roots leader is concerned that conservative activists’ IRS problems will work to Democrats’ advantage, however. Tea Party Express chairwoman Amy Kremer is among those predicting it will backfire.

“When all this came out about the IRS targeting, it made people mad,” she tells Newsmax. “It made them mad as hell.

“…You get these individuals, under whatever local group, they don’t care: They’re going to go out there, and work their hearts and souls out for the cause.”

Editor’s Note: Govt Prohibited From Helping Seniors (Shocking) 

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Proposed IRS Regs Threaten GOP’s 2014 Senate Push.


Proposed new IRS regulations, combined with the intense ongoing scrutiny of grass-roots conservative groups, could suppress their get-out-the-vote activity enough to hand Democrats the one or two races they need to keep control of the Senate, conservative leaders warn.

“Once caught red-handed,” American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) Senior Counsel David French said, “the administration didn’t change its goal [of] suppressing the free speech of these conservative groups.

”It’s just shifted methods. The ends are the same, only the means have changed,” he says.

Of the 41 grassroots groups named as plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed by the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) — a case alleging widespread abuses of the First Amendment rights of assembly and free speech by the Obama administration and the IRS — 13 still have not yet received an adjudication on their request for non-profit status.

The oldest of those 13 pending applications to the IRS for nonprofit status dates back to December 2009, French says. That would mean at least one group has been sidelined through two election cycles, with a third rapidly approaching.

Of the 13 groups in limbo, two sought 501c3 non-profit status and the other 11 sought 501c4 status as “social welfare” organizations, French said.

According to the ACLJ, five other groups joined the lawsuit after withdrawing their nonprofit applications due to frustration over the IRS approval process. Also, two of the plaintiffs refused to answer IRS questions that they considered unconstitutional, which led to the IRS closing their nonprofit applications without further consideration.

The proposed new IRS regulations seek to limit 501c4 groups’ activities. Conservative activists say the rules have exacerbated their sense of uncertainty and intimidation.

“Of course that has a chilling effect,” says French. “And until it is decisively and emphatically stopped through public, legal accountability, that chilling effect is likely to linger.”

Washington GOP super lawyer Cleta Mitchell, who represents grass-roots conservative activists not included in the ACLJ lawsuit, recently echoed the view that conservative groups continue to be singled out in the run-up to the 2014 elections.

“The IRS is still, very deliberately targeting conservative organizations and subjecting them to additional intense and burdensome scrutiny — and this has not stopped,” she said. “This is still ongoing.”

According to House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp of Michigan, the new proposed IRS regulations, which were first unveiled in November, appear to single out as political activity the precise sorts of programs tea party organizations typically run: Candidate forums, voter registration drives, and distributions of voter guides.

In a column published in the February edition of Newsmax Magazine, the Wall Street Journal’s Kimberley A. Strassel contends that conservative groups are much more likely to become ensnared in the new proposed limitations.

She notes that neither unions, which conduct most of their activities as 501c5 groups, nor 501c3 organizations such as the liberal League of Women Voters Education Fund, are affected. That’s because the rules were not written to apply to those types of nonprofits.

The reaction of conservative activists has grown increasingly strident. Everett Wilkinson, chairman of the grass-roots National Liberty Federation organization, tells Newsmax: “Never before have we seen such attitudes and actions taken in America by an administration or government body.

“They are intentionally trying to silence the voices of millions of Americans, who all they want is to be heard.”

Wilkinson said his organization is closely following nine critical Senate races that could flip either way. But the fear of some that they could become targets of the IRS is having an impact, he says.

“Through this intimidation a lot of people have said, ‘I don’t know if I want to risk the IRS or the Treasury Department or whoever they’re going to send after me,’” he says.

Recent remarks by Democrats appear to have exacerbated conservatives’ concern that the IRS has been politicized.

In January, New York Democratic Sen. Charles Schumer urged the IRS to “redouble [its] efforts immediately” to constrain the tea parties.

During his Super Bowl interview with Fox News host Bill O’Reilly, President Obama said there was “not even a smidgeon of corruption” involved. This despite the fact that the FBI has yet to release the findings of its investigation.

Such remarks appear aimed at energizing a Democratic base that has seen tea party nonprofits as fair game ever since the Citizens United ruling made it easier for corporations to get involved in politics.

Curiously, the IRS targeting has had relatively little impact on the major activist groups that raise millions of dollars each year.

A recent New York Times story reported that four major conservative organizations — FreedomWorks, Tea Party Patriots, the Club for Growth Action Fund, and the Senate Conservatives Fund — are actually outraising their more establishment GOP counterparts such as Crossroads GPS.

But unlike the big groups that can afford to “lawyer up,” it is the smaller activist organizations all over the country — with names like Linchpins of Liberty, Colorado 9/12 Project, First State Patriots, Mid-South Tea Party, and American Patriots Against Government Excess — who have been ensnared by the long arm of the IRS. Those smaller organizations are believed to play a key role in getting out the vote in local neighborhoods.

Wilkinson praises the myriad local tea parties as “the most effective system out there, compared to the Republican consulting groups that get millions of dollars in TV ads and radio ads.

“They put every dollar they have in, and their heart and soul. They’re getting people to the polls for maybe pennies on the dollar.”

How those groups will fare as the tax laws they must comply with grow increasingly complex and demanding is open to question.

French says the proposed IRS rules will mean “an enormous amount of activity undertaken on the basis of issues, is now re-characterized as political, and now subject to limits.

“That essentially takes a group’s ability to engage in issue advocacy and then completely neuters it in the days and the weeks leading up to an election, by defining political activity so very broadly,” he adds.

When the targeting controversy first broke last May, President Obama said the IRS targeting was “inexcusable,” and added: “I’m angry about it.”

The “social welfare” and issue-advocacy 501c4 organizations have received special attention in part because their donors’ names generally do not have to be disclosed.

The controversy over IRS targeting dates back to May 2013. That’s when former IRS executive Lois Lerner revealed that IRS personnel had acted in what she called an “absolutely inappropriate” way by holding up the non-profit applications of groups with the terms “tea party,” “patriot,” or “9/12” in their names.

The IRS asked the targeted groups to answer intrusive questionnaires regarding their activities — ranging from information on their members’ employers, donors lists, and even in one case how much time a particular organization spent “on prayer groups.”

At the time, GOP Sen. Orrin G. Hatch of Utah, the ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, received several complaints. He wrote a letter of inquiry to then-acting IRS Commissioner Stephen T. Miller.

Miller wrote back with assurances that no conservative groups were being targeted. But not long after Lerner’s disclosure, Miller was asked to resign.

The Obama administration has portrayed the IRS affair as a limited imbroglio involving a few rogue agents in the IRS’s Cincinnati office.

But Mitchell says several of her clients were told a final decision on their applications would be handed down from IRS offices in Washington, D.C.

Not every grass-roots leader is concerned that conservative activists’ IRS problems will work to Democrats’ advantage, however. Tea Party Express chairwoman Amy Kremer is among those predicting it will backfire.

“When all this came out about the IRS targeting, it made people mad,” she tells Newsmax. “It made them mad as hell.

“…You get these individuals, under whatever local group, they don’t care: They’re going to go out there, and work their hearts and souls out for the cause.”

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

 

By David A. Patten

Obama to O’Reilly: Fox News Reason for My Problems.


President Barack Obama twice blamed Fox News Channel for misinforming the public on issues that have bedeviled his presidency in the past year during a pre-Super Bowl interview with the network’s Bill O’Reilly.

The two sat down in the White House on Sunday for a live pregame interview that started about 4:35 p.m. and aired for about 10 minutes.

Story continues below video.

Urgent: Do You Approve Or Disapprove of President Obama’s Job Performance? Vote Now in Urgent Poll 

O’Reilly first noted that Obama’s detractors believe he did not initially say the Sept. 11, 2012, attack in Benghazi, Libya, that left U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans dead was terrorism because it happened in the heat of an election.

Obama had just weeks earlier said al-Qaida was on the run after U.S. Navy SEALs assassinated its leader, Osama bin Laden.

“That’s what they believe,” O’Reilly said of Obama’s detractors.

“And they believe it because folks like you are telling them that,” Obama said in the often testy interview.

“No, I’m not telling them that. I’m asking you whether you were told it was a terror attack,” O’Reilly countered.

Obama said it was “inaccurate” to say that Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told him the attack was terrorism when he first gave him the news. O’Reilly noted that Gen. Carter Ham, head of operations in Libya, has testified he immediately told Panetta the attack was terrorism, and not the result of a spontaneous demonstration over an anti-Muslim video.

“But it’s more than that because of Susan Rice,” O’Reilly said, noting that Rice, who was then U.N. ambassador, used the video explanation days later on the Sunday talk shows.

“Just as an American, I’m just confused,” he said.

“Bill, I’m trying to explain it to you if you want to listen,” Obama countered.

The president also turned on Fox News when questioned about the IRS scandal, in which conservative groups were scrutinized more heavily when seeking tax-exempt status.

“These kinds of things keep on surfacing, in part, because you and your TV station will promote them,” Obama said.

O’Reilly asked if Obama was saying there was no corruption in the IRS scandal.

“No,” Obama said.

“There was some boneheaded decisions out of a local office,” adding that there was “not even a smidgen of corruption.”

O’Reilly also asked why Obama didn’t fire Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius over the botched rollout of the Obamacare website in October.

Obama argued that while glitches had been anticipated, no one expected a complete failure of the site. He said everything had been fixed, and the site is now running as it should.

O’Reilly noted that only 8 percent of Americans agree with Obama, and again pressed about firing Sebelius.

“I’m sure that the intent is noble,” O’Reilly said, “But I’m a taxpayer, and I’m paying Kathleen Sebelius’ salary, and she screwed up. And you’re not holding her accountable.”

“Well, I promise you that we hold everybody up and down the line accountable,” Obama said. “But when we’re midstream, Bill, we want to make sure that our main focus is, how do we make this think work so that people are able to sign up, and that’s what we’ve done.”

O’Reilly asked if Obama considered the biggest mistake of his presidency telling “the nation over and over, if you like your insurance you can keep your insurance?”

“Oh, Bill, you’ve got a long list of my mistakes in my presidency,” Obama said.

But he did admit he regretted that the “grandfather clause” written into the Affordable Care Act didn’t cover everyone.

“That’s why we changed it,” he said.

“You gave your enemies a lot of fodder for it,” O’Reilly said.

The interview was scheduled to continue after the live broadcast. The recorded interview is set to air Monday night on “The O’Reilly Factor.”

“I know you think maybe we haven’t been fair,” O’Reilly noted near the end of the live interview, “but I think your heart is in the right place.”

Urgent: Do You Approve Or Disapprove of President Obama’s Job Performance? Vote Now in Urgent Poll 

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© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.
By Greg Richter

Bill O’Reilly Says Holy Spirit Inspired Controversial New Book, ‘Killing Jesus’.


Bill O'Reilly
Bill O’Reilly’s controversial new book, ‘Killing Jesus,’ is expected to become a national best-seller.

Bill O’Reilly has been the king of cable television news for more than a decade. But lately he’s been making headlines for another reason.

His last two books, Killing Lincoln and Killing Kennedy, have sold more than 5 million copies. And his latest release, which came out Sept. 24, is likely to be the most popular and divisive of all. It’s calledKilling Jesus, and it’s already hit No. 1 on Amazon. The book, which he wrote with historian Martin Dugard, is expected to become a national best-seller.

O’Reilly is a devout Catholic, but Killing Jesus is not a religious book. He doesn’t refer to Jesus as the Son of God or the Messiah, and some of his points are in direct contradiction to what the Bible teaches.

For instance, O’Reilly argues that Jesus did not say “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do” from the cross. He says it wouldn’t have been physically possible.

“You die on a cross from being suffocated,” he says. “You can hardly breathe. We believe Jesus said that, but we don’t believe He said it on the cross because nobody could have heard it.”

Despite his controversial remarks, O’Reilly says the Holy Spirit inspired him to write Killing Jesus. He claims he woke up in the middle of the night and thought, “Killing Jesus.”

“I believe because I’m a Catholic that comes from the Holy Spirit,” O’Reilly explained in Sunday’s airing of 60 Minutes. “My inspiration comes from that. And so I wrote Killing Jesus because I think I was directed to write that.”

In the program, Norah O’Donnell asked O’Reilly why he thought the Holy Spirit would choose him. After denying the title “chosen one,” he said, “I’m just one of many who have been given gifts. I can write. I can bloviate on TV. So I’m trying to use the gifts in a positive way. And I believe that’s all directed. And that’s why I’m here on the planet.”

The news broadcaster admits the title is a bit sensationalist but says he wanted the book to get attention.

“Of course it’s sensationalist. That’s who I am,” he told O’Donnell. “I’m a sensationalist. I’m a big mouth. I get attention. In this world you have to—if you want a mass-market presentation, you have to get attention.”

O’Reilly hired Dugard to do the research, which included a visit to the Holy Land to replicate Jesus’ return to Jerusalem and His final walk, CBS reports. O’Reilly once taught history, and Dugard is a history writer.

Since O’Reilly is in New York and Dugard is in California, the team works together on their books by computer and over the phone. Killing Jesus took just eight months and included an advance of more than $10 million.

Source: CHARISMA NEWS.

Bill O’Reilly: ‘Killing Jesus’ Best Available Evidence on Crucifixion.


Bill O’Reilly didn’t become the most popular personality in cable television news by being noncontroversial. And he told CBS’s “60 Minutes” on Sunday that he wasn’t afraid to spark controversy in his new historical thriller, “Killing Jesus.”

Though he used the New Testament‘s four Gospels as source material, he left out parts he doesn’t believe happened as written.

For instance, Jesus didn’t say, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do” from the cross, the Catholic O’Reilly maintains. It wouldn’t have been physically possible, he said.

“You die on a cross from being suffocated,” he said. “You can hardly breathe. We believe Jesus said that, but we don’t believe he said it on the cross because nobody could have heard it.”

Story continues below.

People have a right to take the Bible literally, he said, but in the case of “Killing Jesus,” he was trying to be historically accurate. He never says in the book that Jesus was the Son of God because his book is not intended to be religious.

“So is this the Gospel according to Bill?” asked “60 Minutes” correspondent Norah O’Donnell.

“This is best available evidence according to Bill,” O’Reilly responded.

The most important thing he learned while writing the book was that Jesus of Nazareth became the most famous human being who ever lived, yet he had no infrastructure. He had no government, no public relations expert, no money and no structure, O’Reilly said.

“It’s never been done.”

“Killing Jesus,” follows two other best-sellers by the former high school history teacher, “Killing Lincoln” and “Killing Kennedy,” about two U.S. presidents assassinated a century apart. He writes the books with a co-author who does extensive historical research. O’Reilly uses the material to rewrite a fast-moving, compelling story.

He admits the titles are sensational, but explains that’s the only way to be heard in the marketplace.

“I just want to write about important things in a very entertaining way,” he said. “That’s the formula.”

While the book isn’t religious, O’Reilly is. He says he was inspired to write “Killing Jesus” by the Holy Spirit. He says he just woke up in the middle of the night and thought, “Killing Jesus.”

Asked by O’Donnell why the Holy Spirit would mark him as “the chosen one,” O’Reilly denied any such title. Instead, he said, he is “just one of many who have been given the gift. I can write and I can bloviate on TV.”

O’Reilly now makes more than $20 million a year through Fox News Channel’s “The O’Reilly Factor,” a syndicated column and a live tour he does with comedian Dennis Miller. Two of O’Reilly’s third-grade classmates told O’Donnell he used to get the whole class in trouble by arguing with the nun who taught the class.

“Ain’t America great?” O’Reilly responded. “I was a little thug, and now I’m getting paid millions of dollars for being a big thug.”

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© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

By Greg Richter

David Nelson: US Workforce Can’t Continue to Look in Rear-View Mirror.


David Nelson is chief strategist of Belpointe Asset Management and a Moneynews contributor.

I usually find myself in agreement with most of Bill O’Reilly’s nightly memos.

He does a masterful job of taking on the difficult issues facing our society. However, when he delves into the world of economics, he sometimes doesn’t grasp the secular themes at the heart of the problem.

In a recent show he talked about the economy, referring to fast-food workers who are
protesting for higher wages. He is mistaken about the root causes behind the inability of workers to move up to higher-paying jobs.

Editor’s Note: Put the World’s Top Financial Minds to Work for You

While I agree with him that raising the minimum wage isn’t the answer, it’s important to fully understand changes in the world economy and its effects here at home.

Many workers today have little desire to push themselves or move outside their comfort zone. However, there are even more going the extra mile at work while continuing their education — and they receive little or no reward for their efforts. The world has changed and today’s employed often don’t have the same opportunities their parents did.

Decades ago, the U.S. dominated the world’s economic arena both in education and opportunity. Today, that is no longer true.

China and other countries became the manufacturing centers of the world offering an educated and productive workforce, ready to take over jobs once enjoyed by millions of Americans. Willing to work for less, they’ve attracted industries from every corner of the globe.

The end result is a double-edged sword. As consumers, we reap the benefits of cheaper goods but the effects on our job market are obvious.

Big-muscle jobs go to where big-muscle jobs are cheap — and that simply isn’t here. Water always seeks its own level. Until the cost of manufacturing a good on one side of the planet is the same as the other side, the flow of capital and jobs will be out of balance.

For the last decade, the standard of living for many Americans has declined and that problem has actually accelerated during the last few years. How many of you reading this enjoy a lifestyle that even approaches where you were 10 years ago? If you do, you are in the minority.

Part of the problem is the two bubble economies we’ve witnessed since 1999. The Internet bubble and the housing bust both destroyed wealth at all levels of our society.

However, the real damage to our standard of living is the simple fact that we now live in a global society.

The United States may still enjoy the highest standard of living but global competition has forever changed the work dynamic and has dulled our competitive edge.

I suspect that over the next decade, the standard of living of our competitors will rise and the standard of living for many Americans will continue to fall until both are in balance. Adopting a “woe is me” attitude is never the answer.

Over time, workers in other countries will demand higher wages. The increased pressure on margins will force these companies to raise prices and the United States will appear relatively more competitive.

The concept of the 9-5 job is all but a memory and the family of today, with two working spouses, is the norm. There is much we can do to improve our education, including new online options that dramatically reduce cost.

We will live longer than our parents and should probably expect to work longer as well.

We need to stop living in the past, looking to government to buy us back the lifestyle of yesterday.

Editor’s Note: Put the World’s Top Financial Minds to Work for You

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By David Nelson

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