Friday, October 07, 2005

Bill O'Reilly and tales from "The Twilight Zone"- Part II

Another tear in the fabric of history courtesy of Falafel Bill. This one was picked up by Media Matters. Here is what Billy Boy said:

"My people came from County Cavan in Ireland. All right? And the British Crown marched in there with their henchman, Oliver Cromwell, and they seized all of my ancestors' lands, everything. And they threw them into slavery, pretty much indentured servitude on the land. And then the land collapsed, all right? And everybody was starving in Ireland. They had to leave the country, just as Africans had to leave -- African-Americans had to leave Africa and come over on a boat and try to make in the New World with nothing. Nothing. And succeeded, succeeded. As did Italians, as did -- and I'll submit to you, African-Americans are succeeding as well. So all of these things can be overcome I think, [caller]. Go ahead."

Now media matters and many others focused on the point that Billy Boy seemed to be saying, well, that isn't quite right, he did say that coming over in chains on a slave ship and then living for generations as slaves was the same as immigrating to the US. I certainly would't want to criticize anyone for focusing on that little nugget. But since people are already smacking Billy Boy around over that, let's look at the rest of what he said.

In particular the sentence, "And the British Crown marched in there with their henchman, Oliver Cromwell..."

It probably came as news to the British monarch that Oliver Cromwell was carrying out their work in Ireland. On second thought maybe it wasn't of much concern to the king, Charles I. The reason being that by the time Cromwell went to Ireland on his military campaign he had already signed an order to remove not just the crown, but rather the whole of Charles I's head. And the order had been, for lack of a better word, executed. So here according to Bill, with again an able assist from Rod Serling, the dead king is ordering Cromwell around Ireland on his military campaign. At least in one dimension.

In our dimension, Cromwell was not only not a "henchman" of the "British Crown" he went to Ireland to defeat royalists loyal to the monarchy. In fact, Cromwell so endeared himself to the "Crown" that after Cromwell's death, when the monarch regained power, the new king had his "henchman" dug up from his grave and posthumously executed: hung drawn and quartered with his head put on top of a spike. I would say that is more than a bit indicative that the "Crown" was not favorably disposed towards their "henchman", Cromwell. But again, that is in our dimension.

What about in Bill's dimension? I suppose we can only hazard a guess. On the other hand, I'm not sure I can handle the neural processes that come up with some of this stuff.


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