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The View From O'Reilly

Fox News Channel's Bill O'Reilly managed to bring his view to ABC's The View without starting a war between the sexes.

In fact, the discussion, though sometimes hard to follow with overlapping talk and some raised voices–mostly to try to get a point in edgewise–was relatively civil, even convivial.

Rosie O'Donnell was armed with red stop signs that read "wrong" and "disagree," but she did not wield them very much, and O'Reilly even planted a peck on the cheek of materfamilias Barbara Walters, though she said she wasn't sure that was a distinction she relished.

O'Reilly was there to plug his latest book, which shall remain nameless here because I can't remember the title but which ABC handed out to audience members. He argued that there is a fundamental culture clash–I think "culture" was in the title–between progressives and traditionalists, that difference being that the latter believe the nation is basically good, while the former see it as fundamentally flawed and in need of repair.

He identified Martin Luther King as on the traditionalist–i.e. O'Reilly–side of that divide, which drew some protests.

By the end of the brief political discussion, the two O's, O'Reilly and O'Donnell, agreed to disagree over a parting handshake and O'Reilly asked, jokingly, if he was going to get the $150 Circuit City gift card that audience members were getting. The answer was no.

Does every audience now have to get money or prizes in the wake of Oprah's car giveaway of a couple years back.

By John Eggerton