Bill O’Reilly took to The O’Reilly Factor on Monday night and used his “Talking Points Memo” to “advance this troubling but important story.”

O’Reilly addressed the post-mortem The View conducted this morning about last Thursday’s set-storm-off by Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar.

O’Reilly said he provoked the hosts’ response “because I said that building a mosque near Ground Zero was inappropriate because Muslims killed us there.” This debate, he said, has “entered the fabric of America.”

O’Reilly quoted Barbara Walters as saying on Monday morning that there’s a lot of anger in America right now. O’Reilly’s analysis? There’s a lot of anger because “many folks are fed up with politically correct nonsense.” By which he meant the objection Behar and Goldberg had with O’Reilly using the blanket term “Muslims” instead of “Muslim terrorists.”

“I condemn the far-left fanatics who label the people with whom they don’t agree as bigots. That’s what Joy Behar did again today.”

Me, I think both sides have milked this controversy for about as much scant nourishment as we’re going to get. Today, both sides sounded pretty silly. Goldberg did, when she wondered aloud whether O’Reilly’s condemnation of Muslims extended to Muhammed Ali and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. And O’Reilly did, in terming Behar “far-left.” Calling Joy Behar a leftist must have made Abbie Hoffman, wherever he is in the cosmos, laugh.

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