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For the past two weeks, Keith Olbermann has been using The Hour of Spin to propagandize against the Dubai ports purchase. He repeatedly lied that the deal would result in "turning security at six key ports" over to the UAE. And that brings us to Thursday, the day when the unexpected happened. Republicans brokered an arrangement that would keep Dubai out of US ports. Olby praises Republicans, sings "happy happy, joy, joy"? Not exactly. According to KO's new talking points, this makes Bush a "lame duck" (said not once, but twice), and Dana Milbank chimes in with an angle that never got three seconds of attention on Countdown until tonight:
The country doesn't look terribly good in the eyes of the world. We look like a bunch of xenophobes.
Keith didn't even bat an eyelash at that; all previous spin was rendered inoperative at 8:00 pm EST. He forges ahead to note that a pair of singers have criticized the administration's Katrina efforts, and adds:
Is that it? Is that the final nail?
Then another favorite Olbermann target: Rick Santorum. He meets weekly with lobbyists to discuss fund-raising for his reelection campaign. Because nobody else ever meets with lobbyists to discuss fund-raising. The discredited David Shuster gleefully called it "death by a thousand cuts", while KO suggested that Katherine Harris's campaign is "dead in the water" because of an Abramoff connection. Because no one on the other side of the aisle has any Abramoff connections, do they, Mr Reid?
After a second tease of upcoming O'Reilly Attack #68, the #4 story told us about water on a moon of Saturn via a regurgitated NBC report. Then "oddball", another tease about O'Reilly, and Barry Bonds, steroids, and the commissioner of baseball. Fay Vincent (former commissioner) was interviewed, and then there was still another promo for O'Reilly Attack #68.
Finally, the Big Moment came. Olby, desperate that his extravaganza of last week has not ignited a maelstrom of outrage against the Evil Irishman, relied on one of his tried and true propaganda tricks. Repeat. Lather. Rinse. Repeat. He treated us to the same footage we heard last time, regurgitating some of the claims of last week's ridiculous "expert" guest (the one who actually argued that callers have "a first amendment right" to talk on Bill O'Reilly's radio show!). We heard again how Bill had the call taken down from his website, and nothing about how Olbermann has his own comments removed from websites when it suits his purposes.
Scrounging through Lexis/Nexis, he came up with a reference in a Denver newspaper, so he splashed that on the screen. He ran a satire bit from Al Franken (described by Olby as "my friend") and his Err America show, and comments by Howard Stern. ("Now will you please give me that interview, Howard? Please?!?") KO had his guest, melodramatically hidden in shadow, insist that he did not try to swear or use obscene words. That's really believable, since the guy, who won't give his name, doesn't have a tape of what he said, only what made it on the air before the delay kicked in. The guy's big scoop? He had a call from Fox on his answering machine. Did he return the call? No. Did the Fox guy call back? Err, no. So, one might ask, how does he know it really was somebody from Fox? One might ask that, but not Olby, who summed it all up:
It makes me shiver for the democracy.
That led right into celebrities, and this must have been Keith's Best Night Ever: he had Tom Cruise news! The #1 story was internet porn; by then we'd had our fill of Mr Sanctimony and admit to bailing out early.
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 22nd day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.