10/21/2005

Newsday.com: O'Reilly tired of hate ? Only if it's against HIM

King of hate attacked by a wave of hate.. Couldn't have happened to a "better" person! -- law

What's hate got to do with it?
Plenty, because media firebrand Bill O'Reilly spawns enmity in all that he does - and he's sick of it

...One usual suspect behind this rising tide of hatred, he says, is the Liberal Media Establishment, infuriated because it "can't marginalize me." But whatever the reason, almost exactly a year since he settled a sexual harassment lawsuit with former Fox News producer Andrea Mackris - the anniversary is next Thursday - the embattled life of O'Reilly has become an increasingly strange and scary one.

As O'Reilly puts it, here are the facts: There are death threats. He has to hire bodyguards. He can't check into hotels with his family. People on the street with cell phones are stealth paparazzi, capable of snagging a picture one minute, then posting it on the Web the next. He adds that during the past year he's had to "even get more stuff to make it more difficult for people to get through the wire. Who wants to live like that?"

And as a direct consequence of the lawsuit - which was settled for undisclosed terms and which both parties agreed to never speak of publicly - O'Reilly must have a third person present whenever he conducts a rare interview like this one, or talks to someone on the phone. (Dave Tabacoff, executive producer of "The O'Reilly Factor" is the minder on this early fall day.) "Anyone can accuse me of anything and [then] it's on a Web site." So little wonder that when Bill O'Reilly is asked about his future after his current contract ends a little more than two years from now, he blurts out one word even as the question is asked: "Retirement."

Only so much he can take

"I might. I might," he adds. "That depends on how I feel physically. Like an athlete, the body breaks down after a while. There's only so much aggression you can absorb [but] right now, I have no other vocational aspirations." He will do no other shows for Fox, he says. He recently started writing a book titled "Culture Warrior," but claims that will be his last. He once mulled a run for the Senate and even the presidency as an Independent but now categorically rules out a political future. He insists that he finally sees the road ahead, and it probably leads out of Fox News headquarters and away from the scorching spotlight - forever.



Newsday.com: What's hate got to do with it?

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