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On tonight's Hour of Spin, Keith Olbermann found a way to make The Great Leak Case the most important story of the evening. The New York Times speculates that Time reporter Viveca Novak may have "tipped off" Richard Luskin (Karl Rove's lawyer) to what Matt Cooper's testimony may be.
It's unclear how this would affect the case in any way, but Newsweek's Richard Wolffe showed up to engage in some guesswork. It also gave him the opportunity to take a few shots at Viveca Novak, who, if tonight's Countdown is any indication, is about to get the same volley of knives in her back from fellow reporters that have already been fired off at Bob Woodward and Judy Miller.
Other journalists (e.g. Deborah Orin) report from their sources that the Novak-Luskin conversation had nothing to do with Matt Cooper at all. But Olby didn't bother to let his viewers know about that. What, you expect Keith to be fair and balanced? For that matter, as Wolffe voices his criticisms of Time magazine, no mention was made that MSNBC has a content relationship with Time's chief competitor.
After playing a clip of the President giving some good economic news, we had another delightful visit from Olbermann's Brain, Craig Crawford. Brain giggled about "loss of credibility", while Olby inquired:
Are the civilians tuning him out?
Crawford, whose incessant chuckling puts that of Pat Robertson to shame, opined that the President is "afraid" to appear before civilian audiences. All of this an excellent prelude to the Bad News from Iraq Report, via taped pieces from Richard Engel and Mike Boettcher.
Pet rescues and reunions were the #3 story (no, we're not kidding!); then we got sports items and finally "mad scientist" experiments. Just as on Thursday, the "worst person" segment was a double-header of one Republican and one Fox News employee. Ann Coulter was the runner-up, but John Gibson was "worst" because he dared to suggest that murderous terrorists might be following the "wrong religion". Picking up on a smear from a Soros website, Keith Olbermann accused John Gibson of "intolerance".
This deserves a bit of analysis. Olby's suggestion that it's wrong for a believer to consider his religion more valid than another is an ignorant, illogical construct. How can all religions be equally valid when they all differ on matters of doctrine? In truth, people who express Keith's view are people for whom such beliefs have little or no importance. To them, it really doesn't matter what the articles of faith are, because they are all irrelevant. Sure enough, Olby stated that one's faith doesn't matter: "What's the difference?"
Which brings us to John Gibson's "intolerance". "Tolerate" is defined as "to allow without prohibiting or opposing; to put up with; endure". One shows tolerance to things one disagrees with, or even things one believes to be invalid. There is no "tolerance" required whatsoever if one holds the view that one religion is as good, or as meaningless, as another. Tolerance is a discipline for believers, not relativists or skeptics.
Keep in mind that Olbermann's quotes are not to be trusted. He read off Gibson's comment about religions, but didn't read Gibson's very next words:
as long as they're civil and behave, we tolerate the presence of other religions around us without causing trouble, and I think most Americans are fine with that tradition.
Exactly how does this show "intolerance", Mr Olbermann? One suspects that you are a lot more intolerant of conservatives and Fox News employees than Mr Gibson is of other religions. At least he doesn't slice up quotes from you to change the meaning of what was said.
Olby made it a point to mention that he considers John Gibson a "personal friend". This smarmy, repugnant indignity earns Olby an 11 on the puke-o-meter.