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"COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00-9:00 P.M. ET)
Host: Keith Olbermann
SELIG SAYS "NO CELEBRATION FOR BONDS"; MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL PLAYER THROWS A BAT AT AN UMPIRE; NEW YORK METS FAN WHO MADE A 'VIRAL VIDEO' OF THE 1986 WORLD SERIES: Conor Lastowka, the Mets fan
OLBERMANN-O'REILLY FEUD: Tom Breuer and Joseph Amann, co-authors of "Sweet Jesus, I Hate Bill O'Reilly"
"Olbermann Watch Makes Its Debut on Countdown!"
We were dreading Friday's Countdown, but among all the detritus of OlbySpin was an inadvertent nod to Olbermann Watch: so powerful and influential that Orange Man himself reads it, and even lifts from it! The hour began with comedian Keith Olbermann bellowing about Rush Limbaugh's settlement agreement with Florida prosecutors. Basically Limbaugh agreed to a diversion program, where a single charge is held in abeyance to be dropped after 18 months of following conditions. Mark Potter of NBC gave a factual report that contrasted mightily with Krazy Keith's hyperventilating. Then KO decided to up the innuendo ante:
Scandal, something of a cottage industry among Republicans these days...
Yeah, particularly when you don't bother reporting any of the Democratic scandals. Olby dredged up that election-day phone-jamming scheme again, and trumpeted a "financial connection" between that scandal and Haley Barbour. The connection? Barbour was "one of the original investors" in the company behind the scheme. Oh, and there is no evidence "that he played any role" in the scheme. Well, there's a headline. Since this involves speculation and innuendo, that's David Shuster's cue. The doubly discredited hack repeated old news from months ago about phone calls made to a general number at the White House. Olby thought there were "20 or 30 dots" to connect and wanted to know if maybe Jack Abramoff is involved. Slippery Shuster was happy to imply that he might be. But something was missing.
With all the talk of the Republican "cottage industry of scandal", we don't recall Krazy Keith or Slippery ever reporting on another election-day scheme. Three Democratic campaign workers and a Congresswoman's son (Look! A connection to high-ranked Democrats!) slashed the tires at a Bush-Cheney heaquarters on election day, 2004. They were sentenced on Wednesday and will be spending time in The House of Many Doors. How easy it is to paint scandal as a "Republican cottage industry", when you simply fail to report on Democrats, even when they have been convicted and sentenced to the pokey.
KO and DS engaged in more rehashing of Karl Rove's testimony (from two days ago!); no, there was no news on this front. This was just to keep the issue on the front burner so all six members of the Krazy Keith fan club will keep watching. When he got to the #4 story, Keith showed Dennis Hastert switching from a photo-op hydrogen car to an SUV, and a clip of Barbara Boxer who was also tooling around in a gas-guzzler. Dana Milbank wasn't wearing any Halloween garb, and he and KO chewed the fat about gas prices, $100 rebates, and all things oily. Olby took the President's request for authority to raise fuel economy standards as a ploy to "take the power away from Congress". Natch.
After oddball, it was another edition of ESPN on A-Mess-NBC, as talk turned to Barry Bonds, Babe Ruth, thrown bats, etc. In the #2 slot, Monica Novotny reported on the secret code embedded in the ruling by the Judge on the DaVinci Code case, and a KO jab at Bill O'Reilly (not substantive enough to count as attack #83) led into celebrity news.
Finally came the segment the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann had been so tirelessly promoting since the top of the hour. And, much to our delight, it began with this audio clip lifted straight off Olbermann Watch! So great is our impact and prestige that we are required reading even for Krazy Keith himself. Though he is willing to credit blue blogs like Crooks & Liars when he appropriates their media clips, he didn't give any nod of acknowledgement Olbermann Watch tonight, even though he used our clip. Anyhow, KO was just warming up for a full segment bashing Mr Bill O'Reilly himself, and this definitely qualified as O'Reilly Attack #83.
Olby brought in a pair of hate-monger authors to participate in the bash-fest, and immediately wanted to know if O'Reilly was going to apologize for not knowing that the publisher of a paper had died a few
months years ago. Actually, it turns out O'Reilly was right about the man's name; they just put the wrong picture up on screen (the publisher's deceased father, who has the same name), not too different from what KO did when he confused Neil Boortz with Max Cleland. Keith Olbermann talking about apologizing for mistakes? The irony is rich. The three chortled about O'Reilly "errors", but the only one cited, other than the dead guy, was when Mr Bill cited the "Paris Business Review", an apparently nonexistent publication.
KO got a good laugh out of that, but we wonder what he found so funny. Does he expect us to forget that he himself reported Big News from the "Hoosier Gazette", telling his audience about the findings of a "study" by one "Dr Lee"? The article was a fake; no such newspaper exists. KO lifted this "news" from a parody website, but the clueless Man-Tan Man never bothered to do even the most rudimentary fact-checking before he spouted this misinformation as fact to his 352,000 viewers. Keep laughing, Keith.
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 70th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
"COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00-9:00 P.M. ET)
Guest Host: Brian Unger
SENATE REPORT FINDS THAT FEMA IS BEYOND REPAIR: Richard Wolffe, Newsweek White House correspondent
PROTEST ROCK FROM BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN, NEIL YOUNG, PINK, AND OTHERS: David Was, contributor to NPR's "Day to Day"
Does anyone really believe that Keith Olbermann writes his own copy for Countdown? How odd that even when he isn't there, the script sounds just like every other Hour of Spin. At least tonight, A-Mess-NBC had the honesty to admit the show is a joke by bringing in Brian Unger, formerly of Comedy Central and The Daily Show.
Slippery Shuster delivered another one of his Karl Rove specularamas, complete with weasel words like "might" and "could". Plus a special treat: more Shuster gossip from an unnamed single source. And Duke Cunningham's scandal may have involved prostitutes, according to the Wall Street Journal. A report on "protest rock", including a fawning interview with a leftist "expert", could have come straight from the Krazy Keith playbook. (If KO can incessantly cite the Nixon playbook, then we can cite his.) And loads of video regurgitated from the network mothership.
For the record, the stories were: #5: scandals (Republican only) and FEMA; #4: gas prices and oil profits; #3: protest songs; #2: the Hollywood Pellicano scandal and celebrity news; #1: EXCLUSIVE! Angelina Jolie interview.
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 69th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
BOB COX'S SUGGESTED READING:
We have posted at our other place a montage of audio clips from the first broadcast of the new Fox Radio show with Brian Kilmeade and Judge Andrew Napolitano. We pulled from that file this snippet that deals with our Olby [mp3 audio]:
In a separate post, there's also an interesting account of the early years of Countdown Crony David Gregory, including the truth about his hair.
COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00-9:00 P.M. ET)
Host: Keith Olbermann
KARL ROVE: David Shuster
TONY SNOW: Dana Milbank, Washington Post
UNITED 93: Devin Gordon, Newsweek
BRITTNEY SPEARS: Michael Musto
"Trial and Error"
You didn't have to be a member of the Psychic Friends Network to predict what the top story on tonight's Countdown would be. Rove testifies! And yes, Keith Olbermann dragged in the doubly discredited David Shuster to speculate about what it might mean, and to relay the opinions of numerous, unnamed "lawyers". Every negative inference was trumpeted, but what's the point of detailing the Niagara of innuendo from Shuster, when nothing an unreliable hack says can be taken at face value?
KO also had Tony Snow in his sights, snarking as early as his opening spiel about Snow really being on the White House payroll all along. Of course, that kind of conflicts with all the quotes Olby rattled off yesterday where Mr Snow was critical of Bush. Keith must have hit his head one too many times for his short-term memory loss to be this severe. "Snow Job", "Spin Doctor", and other predictable hilarities preceded that master of satorial flamboyance, Dana Milbank, who was egged on by KO to liken the hiring to the Armstrong Williams situation. Then Keith suddenly remembered those critical columns again. The twists and turns of OlbySpin are just too dizzying to contemplate.
Poll numbers kicked off the #4 story, which focused on Laura Bush as a campaigner. It was another piece of tape regurgitated from NBC. Oddball preceded a story about a 9/11 memorial that is being opposed by a Republican (surprise!) Congressman. Then the topic turned to the new film "United 93". Keith noted:
Critics have said it is too soon, not even five years after the tragedy, for a feature film on it.
"Critics"? All critics? Some critics? He could just as easily have said, "Critics raved about the film". So why did he phrase it as he did? Devin Gordon of Newsweek found the movie to be powerful, but suggested it's not something he wanted to see. He seemed disappointed that the movie stuck to the facts and didn't include some sort of "commentary" on the event.
Another rerun from the mothership dealt with technology in law enforcement, and the rest of the program was dedicated to celebrity news (Teri Hatcher! Michelle Rodriguez! Tom Cruise! Brittney Spears!). The creepy Michael Musto did his usual shtick, while Keith's pretend forced laughter sounded phonier than ever. Meanwhile, the Media Matters Minute brought us O'Reilly attack #82, for the crime of objecting to a newspaper that he says smeared him. Olby's lifting of this item from the Soros site comes exactly one day after Media Matters put up free PR video of KO's last O'Reilly attack. So this one should appear sometime Thursday.
It is useless to wonder when Keith will ever report on the scandals involving Mollohan and Jefferson (both Ds), but we had another silent pooch on our mind. It was just two weeks ago when Olby, eager to portray the administration as incompetent, made a screaming headline out of a terror trial in Lodi, California. He put a soundbite in his opening spiel about how innocent the accused was (as it turns out, it was from a hired witness for the defense). He bellowed that the case was weak, and claimed it was all but "irretrievably lost". It was a typical Olbermann propaganda piece in every respect.
We were reminded of it today when we read that a verdict against the chief suspect in the case had been rendered: Guilty! This trial was headline news when Keith thought he could spin it to make the government look bad. But on tonight's Countdown, Olby couldn't even bother to tell his viewers the verdict, let alone admit his error in dismissing the case as all but lost.
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 68th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
Host: Keith Olbermann
CIA LEAK POLITICS: Larry Johnson, fmr. CIA officer; Greg Mitchell, editor of Editor & Publisher
GAS PRICES: Rick Klein
It would take more than the efforts of one humble Olbermann Watcher to catalog all the spin, propaganda, and outrageous drivel that the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann regurgitated on Tuesday's night's Countdown. From the opening spiel, where he bellowed about scapegoats and "McCarthyism", to his interview guests--including the disreputable radical Larry Johnson--this was an Hour of Spin for the record books. The Man-Tan Man bellowed:
A witchhunt is still a witchhunt, and McCarthyism, whether named for proponent or victim, still sends shivers.
Adding to the surrealism of the world as seen on OlbyPlanet, all this frenzy was over yesterday's news: Mary McCarthy denying, through surrogates, that she was the criminal who leaked classified information. A standard Olby ploy, repeating and rehyping old stories for a disinformational purpose, was in full bloom tonight. He wanted to know how this leak was found so rapidly, when we "still don't know" who leaked Plame's name. KO has already forgotten that the government-appointed prosecutor in fact does know who leaked Plame's name; he just hasn't made it public. Didn't Olby himself discuss that with slippery Shuster just the other day? We realize Keith doesn't know who's in the President's cabinet, but shouldn't he know what's been on his own show?
Then we get to the unsavory Mr Johnson, the ex-CIA genius who told us, two months before 9/11, that we have "little to fear" from terrorists, because all these "fantasies" about a terrorist threat were just "fiction". This impartial "expert" has even delivered the DNC weekly radio address, just the sort of resume line that endears him to Krazy Keith. So again KO trots out a left-wing ideologue to parrot his spin and give exactly one side of the story: she's a "scapegoat", maybe she's being "framed", "political hacks" are trying to "intimidate the press". Johnson, with his great track record of keen analysis, vouched for the fact that the prisons leak did no intelligence damage. A journalist might have asked him to back that up, but a hack like Krazy Keith doesn't know the meaning of "follow-up".
For two nights in a row, Olby has foisted on his viewers ideological cronies of the fired ex-CIA liar, giving zero time to anyone with a different point of view. What leftist will KO drag out tomorrow night to continue his on-air crusade as Chairman of the Mary McCarthy Defense Committee?
There was more spin to come from Greg Mitchell, of Editor and Publisher. This brought a revival of Keith's Konvoluted Konspiracy, and tonight the "expert" guest was more than willing to buy into KO's fevered fantasies. Olby suggested that the administration was trying to "criminalize" reporting, and Greg was exactly the kind of subservient human ditto machine that Keith requires of his favored guests.
KO took a few shots at Tony Snow, but don't get the idea that it was anything clever or original. He just lifted a bunch of quotes, without verifying them, from the far-left Think Progress. As is typical of the "journalism" of Keith Olbermann, he didn't even credit his "source". Then the topic turned to energy and gas prices. Rick Klein, of the far-left Boston Globe was next in the Countdown Chair of Claptrap, but he broke precedent with the two simpletons who preceded him by being relatively sane. After "oddball", The Hour of Spin took its traditional voyage to the bottom of the barrel (which tonight, even more than usual, was a short trip). There followed a parade of "reports" that are certain to be future Peabody nominees: Paris Hilton, Charlie Sheen, internet videos, Cindy Margolis, and standing room areas for airplanes (abruptly cut off by a loss of satellite).
Dogs that didn't bark included the scandal surrounding Paul Mollohan (D), the Zarqawi video, governmental consensus in Iraq, new background checks on port workers, and anything else that doesn't comport with KO's biases. We wouldn't want him getting nauseous now, would we?
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 67th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
"COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00-9:00 P.M. ET)
Host: Keith Olbermann
RESIGNATION CALLS AND THE WHITE HOUSE: Howard Fineman, Newsweek chief political correspondent and MSNBC political analyst
CIA LEAK FOLLOW UP: Melissa Boyle Mahle, retired CIA officer
DEATH OF ELVIS IMPERSONATORS?: Stingray, an Elvis impersonator
"My Pet Scapegoat"
Monday's Countdown found Keith Olbermann with his own unique spin on the fired CIA operative: she's been railroaded! She really didn't leak, and she really didn't flunk the relevant portions of her polygraph. Of course, if she flunked any part of her polygraph, that's pretty strong evidence that she is a liar, but Olby chose not to follow that line of reasoning. All of this based on Mary McCarthy's denials? Umm, not exactly. It's predicated on the word of her attorney.
As per Andrea Mitchell's report, the slip-and-fall lawyer insists McCarthy "did not leak classified information". One suspects some fine parsing going on here, since there were no denials of her unauthorized contacts with the mainstream media. KO, of course, quickly suggested that she was being made a "scapegoat"--he instantly took the attorney's version as 100% truthful. Going even further:
This of course all reads like a page from the Richard Nixon playbook.
Olby's copy of that playbook must be in tatters by now, since he refers to it so often. And just to make sure tonight's Olbermann Talking Points are in no danger of being contradicted, he brought in Melissa Mahle, friend of Valerie Plame and (like the thief) John Kerry supporter. KO served up another of his patented leading questions:
Extrapolate for me, assuming that the CIA did not completely change in the time after you left it, what could have, what must have, these polygraphs done to morale and productivity?
Mahle described the search for the thief as a "witchhunt" that adds to "discontents". Keith found a way to bring up Valerie Plame, and raised the suggestion again that McCarthy is a "scapegoat"; Mahle refused to bite and basically said we'll have to "wait and see".
Poll numbers always get reported on The Hour of Spin when they are down, so the latest CNN poll was featured in the #4 slot. KO gleefully relayed the LA Times opinion that Cheney and Rumsfeld should be replaced, and ran a clip from 60 Minutes where yet another Kerry supporter was critical of the administration. Watching Countdown, you'd think everybody was a Kerry supporter, but that's because they're the only ones who get any attention from KO. Howard Fineman, the Chameleon of Pundits, nattered on about "credibility", but Olby immediately brought it back to tonight's talking point: the pseudo-denials by Mary McCarthy's mouthpiece. Howie did his bit: the CIA was "pressured": it was all the work of those "neocons".
At the tail end of the segment, KO mentioned what he apparently considered a trivial, unimportant story: the terrorist attacks in Egypt. It got all of 30 seconds.
After "oddball", the subject was gas prices, and the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann made sure to note that the White House has connections to "big oil". After a recycled NBC report from the impartial, ever-fair David Gregory, Ken Bazinet of the New York Daily News said the President will "try to change the subject", while Olby again brought up the "business background" (i.e. "big oil") of Bush and Cheney.
The Man with the Tan was beaming as he introduced the #2 story: Tom Cruise News! After still more celebrity palaver, the hour wrapped with a Pulitzer-worthy report on Elvis impersonators, complete with a rendition of "The Impossible Dream".
In the Media Matters Minute, Ben & Jerry's was "worst" for a bad choice of a new ice cream flavor. But fear not, Bill O'Reilly made it as a runner-up (attack #81) for saying he trusted what his military analysts told him about Iraq. KO dutifully lifted not only Bill's comment but also the selectively cherry-picked quotes from the analysts straight off the Soros website. Watch for Media Matters to put up its reciprocal Olby video clip within 24 hours.
With all the breaking Tom Cruise and Elvis Presley news, KO just didn't have time to report on the new consensus Prime Minister in Iraq. And despite his monomaniacal obsession with scandals that involve Tom DeLay, Jack Abramoff, or other Republicans, he still has yet to report on Alan Mollohan, who was pressured to resign from the House Ethics Committee and is the subject of a widening federal probe. Oh wait, he has a (D) after his name. 'Nuff said.
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 66th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
I am going to delete this post later but a heads up to all you loyal Olbermann Watch readers. I am heading to to the Radio & Television News Directors Association (RTNDA) Convention in Las Vegas to speak on a panel (Citizen Journalism: Embracing the New Power of Your Audience) on Tuesday morning so I don't expect to be too active here until I get back. If you saw Good Night and Good Luck this is the convention Edward R. Murrow addressed at the opening and closing of the film. And the Olbermann peg? They have awarded Keith two Edward R. Murrow Awards.
Citizen Journalism: Embracing the New Power of Your Audience
From cell phone video to personal blogs, everyoneâ€™s becoming a reporter. And they all have suggestions on how we should run our newsrooms. Learn how to embrace the citizen journalist movement and integrate their perspectives into our newscasts and websites. Plus, hear the results of exclusive new research Discuss and debate the future of journalism with a distinguished panel of visionaries who will tell you what you need to know so you wonâ€™t be left behind.
Moderator: Merrill Brown, editorial director, News 21, MMB Media, New York.
Neil Budde, General Manager, Yahoo! News
Laura Ling, Supervising Producer, Current TV
Adrian Van Klaveren,Deputy Director of News, BBC News
Robert Cox, President, Media Bloggers Association
"I just wanted to find out what happened to her" - Keith Olbermann
On ESPN Radio, Keith Olbermann admitted to hiring a private investigator to track down his "ideal woman", Mrs. Rice, a former social studies teacher with whom Olbermann had become infatuated decades earlier. Listen below as his stunned broadcast partner Dan Patrick describes KO's behavior as "stalking":
Source: The Dan Patrick Show on ESPN Radio (note: segments of "The Big Show" portion of the broadcast are available for free at the iTunes Music Store, to listen to the entire show you must register here
h/t OlbyWatch Reader "T"
Writing on the PBS.org site, MediaShift columnist Mark Glaser writes:
Conservative blogger Robert Cox, who writes the National Debate blog, told me he was amazed at the quality of Wikipedia and thought it was a great resource. But there was something about the free online community-generated encyclopedia that was getting under his skin - what Cox believed was a liberal bias in many hot-button topic entries, despite Wikipedia's principle of giving a neutral point of view (NPOV).
Cox felt there was a liberal tilt to the entry on George W. Bush, Bill Clinton , and the partial-birth abortion entry, to name a few. Plus, at one point, Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales invoked the dreaded WP:OFFICE command - basically a unilateral edit done only by Wales - to tone down a scathing liberal point-of-view entry on the conservative site NewsMax.com .
So I thought it might be a good idea to have a three-way email discussion between Cox (pictured at left) and Wikipedia founder Wales (pictured above) to find out what the project's effervescent leader thought about political bias and how Wikipedia deals with it.
The discussion quickly turns to my experience with the Keith Olbermann entry and gets a bit testy.
I have had my own direct experience with editors of the Keith Olbermann page which suggests this is the case. I edit a blog called Olbermann Watch . Not that it was ever my goal in life but I am now the leading blog critic of Keith Olbermann and a recognized authority on Keith Olbermann (citation: quoted in Washington Post, New York Observer, Hartford Courant, Online Journalism Review, etc.).
Not only do I know a great deal about Keith Olbermann, I also have a good deal of familiarity with some of the Wikipedia editors who have watch-listed his entry â€” liberal fans of Keith Olbermann. Some of these fan/editors have declared online that the Keith Olbermann page is their â€œpet projectâ€? and, not surprisingly, the entry reads more like a â€œfan siteâ€? than an encyclopedia entry. Some of these editors have openly sought to use that page to market their own fan sites and forums. Not surprisingly, the Keith Olbermann entry is massively non-NPOV.
Mathew Ingram, technology writer with The Globe and Mail in Toronto, weighs in
J.D. Lasica has been converted.
"If journalism suffers from an institutional malaise, it's because we have too few journalists like Olbermann who are willing to speak truth to power."
"COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00-9:00 P.M. ET)
Host: Keith Olbermann
IS HARRIET MIERS THE NEXT TO GO AT THE WHITE HOUSE?: Mike Allen, TIME White House correspondent
COVER OF ROLLING STONE - "THE WORST PRESIDENT IN HISTORY": Sean Wilentz, author of the article and director of American Studies at Princeton University
"Whistling in the Dark"
We wondered how long it would take for Keith Olbermann to suggest that the woman fired for stealing classified secrets and giving them to a reporter was really just a "whistle-blower". Bingo! It happened as soon as the opening spiel was over, just 01:40 into the Hour of Spin. Andrea Mitchell was there to discuss the CIA's "unprecedented" action of firing a leaker. Olby quickly tried to suggest the thief could defend herself as a "whistle-blower", and Mitchell replied:
Well NO, Andrea. And NO, Keith. There is no whistle-blower protection for people who give away government secrets. People within the CIA who have a problem with something internal or classified can take it to Congress. People who steal secrets and sell them, or give them away to reporters, are not whistle-blowers, and cannot be whistle-blowers. It's a little thing called the law.
You can always trust Krazy Keith's tin-foil instincts to come up with a conspiracy theory to fit any occasion, and he didn't fail us tonight:
Let's limit ourselves to three events that have occurred in the last week: Dana Priest gets the Pulitzer Prize; Bill Bennett, former Education Secretary, still tight with the administration, says she and the reporters of the New York Times who broke the domestic spy story should not be getting awards, they should be getting jail time; then this firing and the confrontation happens. Are those things coincidences of timing, or is there a line running through them that's something other than just chronology?
Ms Mitchell either didn't follow Keith's Konvoluted Konspiracy, or deliberately chose to vague up her answer so as not to embarrass KO by telling him: You're nuts! Olby wanted to know if a "brazen" action like this--firing a thief of classified secrets--is "something that goes through the White House". Yes, Keith. Karl Rove and Dick Cheney ordered it, because she was getting too close to the hidden agenda of Halliburton's helicopters.
Andrea didn't bite on KO's most preposterous lines, so it was time to call in Olbermann's most preposterous "expert", disbarred lawyer and leader of the impeach-Bush crowd, John Dean. This was a great opportunity for Keith to compare the firing of the thief to Richard Nixon and the Pentagon papers. For his part, the ex-con said firing the thief will not "sit well" with people in government. Krazy Keith peered into his crystal ball to divine the motive of the thief in one of his trademark run-on sentences:
We now understand, with the revelation of who Deep Throat was last year, in the person of Mark Felt from the FBI, that the leaking in 1972, 1973, 1974, was about getting information out that the system was trying to contain, that there were people who, at that bureau level, or at that organization, or agency, level, uh, were offended that the rule of law was being skirted with. Do we assume that's what we're seeing in this case, that that same sort of reaction is still there, is still present, is still a, a, uh, check or balance...
Sorry, we just couldn't type any more of this verbal diarrhea. (And yes, he really did say the rule of law "was being skirted with".) On OlbyPlanet, people who are upset with laws being skirted are perfectly entitled to register their concern by going out and brazenly breaking the law themselves! Surely, even felon Dean isn't going to buy this:
That typically is the whistle-blower motive.
AAIIEEEEE! "Whistle-blower" again! No wonder the ex-con was disbarred. He is obviously as much in the dark about the law as KO is, but that's probably why Keith asked him on. Anyone knowledgable would give the Krazy one's theories the horse laugh. But the spin wasn't over yet, as the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann came up with yet another gem:
It is clearly semantics, and only semantics, to say there is a difference in these two acts: a CIA officer decides to clue somebody in on these former Soviet Gulags which are now being used as detention centers by this country, and a President decides to declassify classified information so it can be then used to discredit a detractor.
Yes, it's just semantics that the President has the right to declassify and Mary McCarthy doesn't. If that's right, and there's no difference, then why did anyone bother to investigate the Plame leak? Is Keith Olbermann really this stupid, or does he think the viewers of A-Mess-NBC are? (We won't even go into the spin behind the notion that rebutting Joe Wilson's arguments means you are trying to "discredit" Joe Wilson.) Once again, Olby brought up Keith's Konvoluted Konspiracy, the one Andrea Mitchell tactfully avoided, but even the disbarred lawyer thought it was dubious, to say the least. And all of this, before the first commerial break! But fear not, there was more to come on the Friday night cavalcade of Bush-bashers.
The #4 segment began with another snipe at a cable news station that actually has viewers. Olby snarked that Brit Hume was skeptical of a CBS poll that had Bush at 34% because it oversampled Democrats, but now Fox's own poll shows Bush at 33%. Of course these polls were months apart, so Krazy's point was...? Don't try to make sense of it. All Olbermann has going for him are the snickers and giggles of the moonbat crowd he programs for, so what he says really doesn't have to make any sense.
This was a lead-in for the next Bush-basher, Sean Wilentz, writer for the academic journal, Rolling Stone. Keith helpfully ticked off all the reasons this far-leftist cited, then bragged to Wilentz:
I'm a student of Presidential history...
Yes we know, and you're a legal expert, and you're the smartest man on television, and you won two Edward R Murrow Awards. Or was it three? wilentz is a hero to the gang at "TruthOut" and "American Prospect", and he didn't disappoint Countdown's target demographic. A poll of historians was "lopsided". Bush is "dividing" the country. Olby compared Bush to George Orwell, and that was that.
Has Keith Olbermann ever interviewed anyone who wrote an article about why Bush is a good President? Even one? Or is this just like the NSA coverage: one "expert" after another, all offering the same point of view, with never a syllable from any other perspective? Note: these are rhetorical questions. We all know the answers.
After a half-hour of unrelenting DNC talking points, it was actually a relief to watch cow video on "oddball". After that, the #3 story was about the teenage plot to shoot up a school (video report regurgitated from NBC), while #2 was a generous helping of celebrity fluff. The Big #1 dealt with "anti-terror wasps" and other unusual counter-terrorism measures, courtesy of Monica Novotny.
In the Media Matters Minute, Keith Olbermann turned 80 tonight. Well, that is, he reached a milestone: O'Reilly Attack #80. Bill was a runner-up because he advocated permitting police to remove homeless people sleeping and urinating on public streets. KO objected because according to him, Mr Bill said these people were abusing drugs or alcohol, or lazy.
But O'Reilly's description was not applied to the homeless in question. It came later in his discussion, when he opined that the ACLU would like the government to support and house people who are drug users or lazy. This is too subtle for Media Matters, or for Krazy Keith, but there are homeless who are drug users and/or lazy. There are also those who are not. O'Reilly's objection was to handouts for those who are. He did not say that all homeless are lazy, drug users, as KO would have you believe. Keith Olbermann mispresenting something Bill O'Reilly said? We're probably pretty close to #80 on that score as well.
As always, when Olby doesn't like the news, he simply refuses to report it; some of the canines that did not woof tonight:
UPDATE: Brad Wilmouth at Newsbusters writes Olbermann Plugs "Bush Worst President" Rolling Stone Article
"COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00-9:00 P.M. ET)
Host: Keith Olbermann
WHAT'S REALLY GOING ON IN THE WHITE HOUSE?: Jim VandeHei, Washington Post
"Look, Hu's Talking"
It's Breaking News! Rove is going to be indicted! Maybe. Possibly. Could be. You know when a "news" story is this speculative and light in substance, it has to come from the doubly discredited David Shuster. And he was Olby's first guest on The Hour of Spin. According to Shuster, the Grand Jury panel "is active again". And Rove isn't listed as a witness in the Libby case, and that means he's going to be indicted. What's more, Fitzgerald's past "official A" designees have been indicted in other cases.
The Shuster Conspiracy Theory: this is why Rove was taken off policy duties, to lower his profile before the hammer drops on him. KO even brought Bob Novak into it, because Novakio has said Fitzgerald knows who the original leaker is. (That is he knows now; he was telling people it was Libby back at that famous press conference.) Follow this Shusterian logic: Novak says the leaker has not been charged because the leak was not illegal. Shuster dismissed that with:
The problem with that, of course, is that right now, Fitzgerald is not looking, or is not prosecuting anybody for leaking classified information.
We will try to educate you, Dave. If Fitzgerald's task was to prosecute the leaker, and when he finds the leaker he doesn't prosecute him, it's not because he's not "looking" to prosecute. It's because he can't. Shuster would have you believe that a bank robber who finds the vault empty wasn't really looking to rob the bank, because he didn't find any money.
When does the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann cite Fox News as a source? When their latest poll finds the President at 33%. There was some fascinating stuff in that survey about immigration issues, but don't expect Krazy Keith to cite anything except the numbers he likes. This was the lead-in to Jim Vandehei of the Washington Post, and Olby wanted to know why Rove's duties were changed. Sadly for Keith, JV made no mention of the Shuster Conspiracy Theory. In our ongoing effort to "find something good to say" about The Hour of Spin, the analysis here was relatively fact-based, at least by Countdown standards.
The #4 story was the protester who popped up at the White House China event today. There was much merriment about how she got credentialed, particularly when the giggling Craig Crawford showed up. Olby spouted about "back checking" and Olbermann's Brain chucked his agreement, but neither made it clear that Dr Wang worked for an accredited newspaper that sent her there without any knowledge of her intentions. The paper has sympathies with the Falun Gong movement in China, but what would have been the reaction if the White House had banned reporters from newspapers that didn't tow the Red Chinese line? "Bush's Bubble Extends to Hu!" "White House Shreds First Amendment!" Instead of that, we got Brain chortling about things like references to "Taiwan".
After oddball: crashes resulting from driver distraction (via a regurgitated NBC report), a new Volkswagen ad (also a rerun from the mothership), and the world's most expensive automobile (recycled from CNBC). The #2 story was about historic houses in Los Angeles being demolished. Yes, this was another regurgitated network tape. The nightly celebrity segment brought news of Tom Cruise. No Countdown would be complete without Tom. The final story was of the imposter claiming to be a doctor giving door-to-door "breast exams", followed by a high-decibel Olby montage of weird Florida news.
A Missouri Congresswoman (R) who sent a constituent letter with a bad word in it was among the "worst person" runners-up. Since the Missouri Democratic Party got hold of the latter and faxed it to the media, it's no surprise that it would find its way onto the Hour of Spin. But we also like to note what doesn't find its way onto Countdown, particularly when Olbermann's interest in political scandals suddenly vanishes. A couple of dogs that did not bark:
Bob Cox's Recommended Show Prep:
And check out our new, improved right column!
A lot of the KO fan sites and blogs out there are pretty lame but there are a few that are really quite good; if you are a KO fan looking for a respite from the rough and tumble world of KO bashing on this site go check them out. Since this Olbermann Watch we can't officially recommend them so let's just say that from our perspective these are our winners for today's Worst KO Sites in the World
Bronze: Drinking with Keith Olbermann - great title, not enough KO coverage to satisfy a rabid fan (is there any other kind) but when Olby is the topic this site is spot on.
Silver: Olbermann.org - this is the home of the OlbyLoons but after some fits and starts they have really done a good job in building up some depth to this site. The forums are not terribly active but as a Keith Olbermann fan resource this site is tops.
Gold: Either Relevant or True - hands down the best site for Keith Olbermann fans, the blogger over there - Becky - captures a lot of information on each broadcast and presents it in a clever, witty way. It is going to be a grind to keep it up over the long-haul but she passed the six month point and appears to be gaining momentum.
On his radio show today, Tony Snow talked about his possible appointment as White House Press Secretary, along with the reactions from blue blogs and the media. Yes, Keith Olbermann came up, twice (at the beginning of the clip and near the end). You can listen to the audio here.
"I've never heard of Keith Olbermann, but from what I've read on that link you provided, he does seem to come off as a huge conspiracy theorist and might be good for entertainment value...[my advice is] turn off the TV once in a while and go read a book. You're entirely too young to be that uptight."
Troublemaker Jack Shafer at Slate, the man who inspired my New York Times satire that had Gail Collins seeing red, is hitting Bill O'Reilly where it hurts: prasing Keith Olbermann for being wittier than he. What say you, BOR?
"In O'Reilly, Olbermann finds the perfect target of his sarcasm and sadism: somebody bigger and more powerful; somebody who takes his bait and runs every time he casts a line; but also somebody who can't fire him or make him miserable enough to quit. That O'Reilly and Olbermann compete in the same time slot is pure gravy for Olbermann. That his ratings are up in recent months is a maraschino cherry on top of the gravy."
h/t Moorelies pal Jason Clarke
PS, here's the whole sordid story of my battle with The New York Times.
"COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00-9:00 P.M. ET)
Host: Keith Olbermann
MAJOR SHIFT AT THE WHITE HOUSE: Richard Wolffe, Newsweek White House
TOMKAT'S NEW KITTEN: Katrina Szish, US Weekly
Countdown Presents: "The Best Of Scott McClellan"
Monica Novotny reports: Ghosthunters.
"Let It Snow"
The Wednesday Countdown began with changes at the White House. Keith announced:
The President loses his Press Secretary and part of his brain.
You see, some of Karl Rove's duties are being reassigned. Rove. Bush's Brain. Get it? Another knee-slapper from KO. As for the Press Secretary, Olby had to take a cheap shot at possible candidate Tony Snow:
Critics would suggest he's already an unofficial White House Spokesman.
Other possibles named were Tori Clarke, an analyst for CNN, and Dan Senor, described by that sharp, insightful observer Keith Olbermann as:
The only candidate thus far rumored without a direct network tv news connection.
Except that Mr Senor is an analyst for Fox News. You'd think someone who is obsessed with hating Fox would at least know whom he is supposed to loathe. Richard Wolffe of Newsweek was the interviewee, and Olby asked him about McClellan's "creative truth-stretching" and whether he was being pushed out. Wolffe thinks "he jumped a bit and he was pushed a bit". But Krazy Keith couldn't let his pathological contempt for Fox rest for even a minute:
If you go with Tony Snow of Fox News, are you not saying, we're only talking to that increasingly smaller group of people who believe Fox News is the sole source of truth in the world?
Increasingly smaller? Keep repeating that, Keith. Sooner or later you may convince yourself. Even that old Clinton spinmeister George Stephanopoulos says Snow would be "an inspired choice. He's quick on his feet and, like Mike McCurry, can parry tough reporters with a wink and a smile." Olby is further off the charts than George. Who woulda thunk it?
After an oh-so-clever montage of McClellan Moments, KO teased a segment about an "insider" who believes Bush will not fire Rumsfeld:
Aren't there a lot of dead soldiers for that to be an acceptable answer?
And that brought us to the #4 story, flogging the "Fire Rummy!" story yet again. Abu Ghee-Raib (Olby's way of saying it). Jack Murtha. Seven generals. And the Bush "insider". Unnamed. Unidentified. But enough for Dana Milbank to rap about. Shorn of his wacky Halloween outfits, Dana came up with a startling insight: Bush is not likely to fire Rumsfeld. Isn't that what the President himself said yesterday? Back when it was still news? The two chewed over all this nothing for several minutes, then--again!--with the Tony Snow cheap shots:
If the President really is pursuing Tony Snow from Fox, would that be frying pan and fire? Would the entire Fox News bias issue suddenly become connected at the hip with how the administration handles truth versus propaganda?
Olbermann alleging bias is like Tony Soprano objecting to violence. Clearly Krazy Keith doesn't want the Snowman to get this job. (That's enough for us. We. Want. Snow.) Rather than embarrassing himself on the air, KO should deal with this unresolved hatred of Fox at his next therapy session.
Olby was only halfway through The Hour of Spin, and the #3 story was about...Tom Cruise! This was, of course, news "my producers are forcing me to cover"--the best possible indication that the producers had nothing to do with it. A regurgitated NBC report led into an interview with Katrina Szish, where Keith, beaming with more Orange-Glo than Billy Mays, elicited every possible detail about The Great Birth. In a major oversight, KO forgot to ask Szish about Tony Snow.
In the #2 slot: rescue from a NYC tram, courtesy of more recycled video from the mothership. Next, celebrity news, because we haven't had enough of that. Monica Novotny handled the finale: real-life ghost busters.
In the Media Matters Minute, the Department of Homeland Security was a runner-up ("worser"), because it awarded a contract to a Halliburton subsidiary. OlbySpin was fully in effect when he characterized the detention of illegal immigrants as "concentration camps". But the winner was Bill Bennett (both Republican and conservative--a twofer!), who criticized giving Pulitzer Prizes to reporters who printed leaked classified secrets. Bennett just doesn't get it. He should have criticized Scooter Libby, who according to Olby leaked classified secrets. Plame, bad leak. NSA surveillance program, good leak. Get with the program, Dr Bennett!
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 61st day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
Bob Cox's Recommended Pre-Countdown Reading:
UPDATE: Brent Baker reports Olbermann Asserts Snow Pick Will Merge FNC's â€œBiasâ€? With White House â€œPropagandaâ€?http://newsbusters.org/node/4985
OlbyWatch Trivia: see if you can figure out who is missing from the list of WPITW winners in the bookseller's notice below.
Here's the bookseller notice (edited for brevity):
"During each edition of Countdown, Olbermann has a segment called The Worst Person in the World, in which he gives out bronze, silver and gold medals to the people who demonstrated that day just low humans can sink morally, socially or politically. He already has 120 pieces, which we ll combine with a brief intro (1000 words) on his methodology in choosing the worst people, as well as his thoughts on just what is wrong with them.
Recent gold-medalists include: Robert Novak, Tom Cruise, Paula Jones, Brit Hume, Paul Eibler (makes Grand Theft Auto ), Liz Beattie (teacher wants to eliminate failing grades), the organizers of a water-gun tournament in NYC, pitchers Kenny Rogers and Livan Hernandez, Councillor Lim Kit Sing of Hong Kong, Amber Frey, Ann Coulter, Victoria Gotti, Geraldo Rivera, and FEMA spokesperson Mary Hudak, plus a half-dozen idiot criminals.
"COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00-9:00 P.M. ET)
Host: Keith Olbermann
ADMINISTRATION UNDER FIRE: Carl Bernstein, "Watergate" veteran and Vanity Fair Contributor
DEMOCRATIC STRATEGY TO CAPITALIZE ON A WOUNDED PRESIDENT: Lawrence O'Donnell, democratic strategist
Tuesday's Hour of Spin opened with Keith Olbermann yelling about a Countdown EXCLUSIVE! An interview with Carl Bernstein. The bidding war over that booking must have been intense. Krazy Keith rattled off a Donald Rumsfeld quote about things we know and things we don't, adding:
If President Bush did not ask for Donald Rumsfeld's resignation after that, what the hell made anybody think he'd ever ask for it?
No, your eyes do not deceive you. He really did say "President" Bush. After pimping again his upcoming EXCLUSIVE interview, Olby ran a few clips from Rummy's Pentagon briefing. But that was just filler to lead into the EXCLUSIVE interview with Carl Bernstein, tonight's designated Bush-basher. Bernstein's Big News? He wrote an online article calling for--get ready!--an investigation! "Very distressing". "Terrible". "They doubt his truthfulness". It's an "aberrant Presidency". The Man-Tan on Keith's cheeks positively glowed as Bernstein said, twice in the space of one minute, that we were at war "in the wrong country". It was basically another John Dean interview, but without Dean or his criminal record.
Only Keith Olbermann would claim that an opinion column posted to the Vanity Fair website is the biggest story of the day. Maybe that's because Carl fit right into the Countdown-mandated spin on all the important issues. The NSA surveillance for example, where KO has never interviewed a guest who defended the program. The pattern continued tonight, with Judge Bernstein ruling that the surveillance was "totally illegal". Ah, that's good. None of those opposing viewpoints that make Keith get all nauseous. Just parrot OlbySpin, or you'll find the Krazy one upchucking all over his desk.
After the EXCLUSIVE interview, a taped NBC report covered potential changes in the White House staff. A second promo for Tom Cruise News was followed by the #4 story: GOP chances in 2006, which Olby particularized by focusing on Rick Santorum and his mention in an episode of The Sopranos. To provide a balanced, impartial analysis of electoral politics, Keith introduced Lawrence ("Liar! Creepy Liar!") O'Donnell, fresh from the balanced, impartial pages of the Huffington Post. One wonders why this wasn't also hyped as an EXCLUSIVE interview, given that no reputable news program wants anything to do with him.
O'Donnell peered into his crystal ball to forecast the political winds of change. This is the same crystal ball that led him to predict Fitzgerald would issue indictments for not just perjury but also the leak, and that Karl Rove would be among the "three-to-five high level" Bush administration personnel indicted. With a record like that, he's the perfect Countdown Nostradamus. Krazy Keith, ever the diplomat, didn't bring up any of these embarrassments, and the two amigos chatted amicably about all the Democrats who are in a "very strong position" against their GOP challengers. Of course, O'Donnell is a Democratic strategist, and that might color his "predictions" somewhat. We'll see how things go when Olby brings on a Republican strategist. Yeah, right.
Another tease for upcoming Tom Cruise News preceded "oddball", then the #3 story dealt with a look back at the great San Francisco quake of 100 years ago. A regurgitated report from the mothership was followed by an interview with geologist Simon Winchester. We're not sure, but we think it was an EXCLUSIVE interview. Through some oversight, Keith forgot to get him to declare the NSA surveillance program illegal. The Duke indictments were next, via another taped piece from NBC, plus another dose of exciting celebrity gossip.
In the Media Matters Minute, the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann selected Steve Forbes for daring to opine that a confrontation with Iran would eventually result in lower oil prices. Yeah, that's pretty evil. The "worst person" was the New Orleans mayoral candidate who used a fake photo of the city. She photoshopped out of the picture a telltale image of a trash can clearly from Disneyland. This is actually something of a milestone for Countdown: a "worst person" who is a genuine, card-carrying Democrat. And it's a victory for Olbermann Watch, where we called for KO to do this last week. So the longest streak in broadcasting history has finally been broken, thanks to the power and influence of Olbermann Watch. But you wouldn't know it from Keith. While he repeatedly identifies Republican "worst persons" by party affiliation, he said not one word about the (D) after Williamson-Butler's name.
The big #1 story: TomKat's baby. For reasons that only the mind of Keith Olbermann can grasp, he first claimed "they're not telling us the gender", while afterwards admitting it's a girl, named "Suri". Paul F Tompkins from VH-1 was there to provide expert analysis. Exclusively. Michael Musto must have been unavailable, but we're not complaining. KO noted:
Suri would be a partial anagram of the name Cruise, as in Tom, if you dropped the C and the E.
Man, Olby is sharp. Nothing gets by him.
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 60th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
Bob Cox's Recommended Countdown Reading:
UPDATE: Brad Wilmouth weighs in on Olby and Bernstein
Columnist Mark Glaser asks "Is there a way to explain the life and times of George W. Bush with a neutral point of view? Point us the way. Also note that this is informally Wikipedia Week here at MediaShift, with the Your Take question on Wikipedia, and an upcoming email discussion between Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales and conservative blogger Robert Cox."
It won't advance the ball to rant and rave on the PBS.org site - they won't publish your comments anyway - but if you've followed the Keith Olbermann Wikipedia issue here you might want to weigh in over there.
NOTE: I'm in the midst of the email discussion with Jimmy Wales which I imagine will be published towards the end of the week.
MSNBC finally found to place to put Keith Olbermann's ratings-black-hole-of-a-show where it will actually be an improvement in their current line up. Repeats of Countdown will begin airing next week in the "coveted" 9:00 AM - 10:00 AM ET time slot. Eternal optimist and MSNBC President Rick Kaplan writes "we're going to give our morning viewers a chance to sample a program they may not have had the opportunity to watch" as if MSNBC has morning viewers. I'm pretty sure McEnroe got bigger numbers on CNBC than MSNBC gets in that time slot and his show usually "scratched".
Long-time MSNBC watchers know that a trip to the dayside lineup is usually the death knell for a show and with less than a year to go on his contract that can be seen, at best, as either a desperate attempt to advertise the show or, as ICN noted, a pure cost cutting move.
Here's the details...
Inside Cable News is reporting that MSNBC Rick Kaplan has made it official:
Starting next week MSNBC will be switching Live and Direct and Scarborough Country's timeslots. Also, the Countdown re-airing is happening starting next Tuesday. Rick Kaplan sent out an internal memo this morning announcing both move...
I'm happy to share with you some news about a primetime schedule adjustment we're going to make beginning next Monday. Rita and Joe are going to switch timeslots. Joe will move an hour earlier to 9pm and Rita will take his place at 10pm. Both Rita and Joe have great programs built around their unique personalities and this change will support their continued growth. Weâ€™ve had a lot of ratings growth this year with Chris and Keith and I'm confident that this change will improve our audience flow and allow us to extend that momentum to the second half of primetime. Tucker will continue to round out our primetime lineup at 11pm.
Also, beginning next Tuesday, we're going to give our morning viewers a chance to sample a program they may not have had the opportunity to watch. Countdown will get an additional re-air at 9am on weekdays. It is, after all, a program about "the stories you'll be talking about tomorrow," so it should be a natural fit."
that's a stretch.
ICN had some thoughts before it became official:
Iâ€™m skeptical of this story because on so many levels this is a bad idea that it makes the likelihood of this happening seem too remote to contemplate. Itâ€™s bad enough that MSNBC canâ€™t compete directly with FNC and CNN in the mornings with live news because Imus is on. To delay the start of live news to 10 am further underminesMSNBCâ€™s credibility as a cable news network. The only reason I could
see this happening is as another budget cutting move; spurned on by NBC Entertainmentâ€™s dive in the ratings and resultant loss of advertising revenue. And there have been plenty of those cuts at MSNBC already. Weâ€™re long past the â€œtrimming the fatâ€? stage at MSNBC. Now the marrow is getting gutted.
C-SPAN Q&A with Keith Olbermann (7:00-8:00 P.M. ET)
Keith Olbermann in an interview about television journalism, Olbermann talks about his childhood, his early love for broadcasting, his principles, specific shows he has hosted, and networks where he worked, including FOX and MSNBC. [rebroadcast of a previous airing in March, 2006]
"COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00-9:00 P.M. ET)
Host: Keith Olbermann
JOSH BOLTEN'S FIRST DAY ON THE JOB; SUPPORT CONTINUES FOR SEC. RUMSFELD: Howard Fineman, Newsweek chief political correspondent and MSNBC political analyst
UNSEXIEST MEN IN THE WORLD: Bill Jensen, associate editor of The Phoenix
Monday's Countdown began with the freshly-orange Keith Olbermann bellowing about new Chief of Staff Josh Bolton. Bolton told staffers who were not planning to stay at least a year to consider leaving now, so their replacements could be plugged in more quickly. In a puzzling interpretation of this stance, Olby claimed this was an attempt to keep people from leaving! He likened it to the Roach Motel: you can check in, but you can't check out.
In a stunning display of reportorial balance, Keith actually devoted a few seconds to the generals who came out in support of Rumsfeld, using his own descriptive spin-phrase for their comments: a "counterassault". A one-sentence clip was shown of Richard Myers, representing the least substantive of all the pro-Rumsfeld arguments. What a difference from last week, when just one or two generals criticizing Rummy got huge, slobbering globs of coverage from KO.
When pundit for all occasions Howard Fineman showed up to discuss Bolton, Krazy Keith let loose with another of his patented leading questions:
Is he the guy for the job? Does he not scream status quo?
Not suprisingly, Howie found a way to concur with this sentiment. Olby went on to suggest the "White House response" re Rumsfeld is that the military are only entitled to comment on civilian leadership when they agree with it. Where did Keith come up with that "White House response"? Your guess is as good as ours. Try writing Keith at msnbc.com. Maybe he'll explain it to you.
After a few short items about The Great Leak Case and the Jack Abramoff scandal, the doubly discredited David Shuster appeared. He offered speculation and gossip about pending investigations, but neither he nor Olby have yet to report on the pending investigations swirling around Rep Jefferson of Louisiana. Oh, he's a (D). That's not news. Shuster also gave some laughable pseudo-analysis about "burden of proof"--pretty daring stuff for a guy who can't even relay one sentence from a legal paper without doctoring it.
When the polls are down, polling news is up at The Hour of Spin. So the #4 story was all about the "realistic shot" that the Democrats have of taking both houses of Congress in 2006. Oh great, it's Craig Crawford again. According to Olbermann's Brain, district lines make it difficult for the Dems to pull off an upset. Keith referenced the "cockamamie" Contract with America, impeachment, and censure, while Brain giggled and chuckled his approval.
After "oddball"--introduced with an imitation of hand puppet Senor Wences, plus accompaniment by The Laughing Stagehand--Olbermann visibly brightened (his demeanor, not his glowing complexion). There was a lilt in his voice, a spring in his verbal step. Yes, the #3 story referenced Tom Cruise! To justify feeding this particular Olbsession, KO brought on an expert to explain just what Scientology really teaches about matters of birth and health. Dr David Touretzky seemed knowledgeable and honest, causing one to wonder what he was doing on Countdown. The reputation of even the most respected authority is immediately suspect when he stoops to appearing with Krazy Keith.
A taped NBC report covered the rape charges at Duke U. Then Michael Jackson Puppet Theater was back to delight the intellectual, educated Countdown audience. The #1 story was about the "un-sexiest men", and the first thing Keith wanted to talk about was Bill O'Reilly and why he was on the list. Yes, the whole thing was a pretext for attack #79, and another feeding of the most rabid Olbsession of them all.
Vince McMahon was a runner-up "worst person", as was a principal who kept her students from participating in an illegal immigration rally by imposing a lockdown so severe they weren't allowed to use the bathrooms. (Buckets in the classroom instead.) Olby failed to mention that the strictness of the conditions was found to be an honest mistake: she inadvertently misread the handbook and imposed a lockdown intended for nuclear attacks.
But the winner: "worst person" Michelle Malkin. She blogged about demonstrators who tried to prevent military recruiters from talking to students at UC Santa Cruz. According to Olbermann, who got his information from the usual blue blog sources:
She also posted the names and home phone numbers of the protesting students who as a result have been inundated with death threats.
What is Keith not telling us this time? The names and phone numbers that Malkin posted? They were printed on the press release the protesters handed out to the media! It was public information!! Does this sound a wee bit familiar? Like Krazy Keith accusing O'Reilly of harassment for giving out a writer's email that anyone can find on the newspaper's website? Or Krazy Keith accusing Olbermann Watch Editor Robert Cox of putting out "personal information" that in fact was already on the internet, in full public view? It's just another of KO's slick propaganda tricks--anything to name another conservative (but never a liberal) "worst person".
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 59th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
Suggested Countdown Pre-Reading [from Bob Cox]:
Bolten Says White House Staff Must `Re-Engage' or Leave Posts
Rumsfeld May Be Permanently Tainted by War in Iraq
2 sealed indictments in Duke rape case
100 unsexiest men in the world [surprise, Bill O'Reilly made the list]
Pay close attention to the story on Rumsfeld "permanently tainted". It begins "Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld will be permanently damaged by failed U.S. planning for the aftermath of the Iraq invasion even if he survives calls for his resignation from seven former military commanders, defense analysts said."
A few notes about this article and why Keith is using it tonight to prepare for his segment on "Rummy":
You will look in vain for any analyst saying that Rumsfeld will be "permanently tainted" or "permanently damaged". The analysts quoted in the article don't say that - it's an invention of the headline writer and the reporter.
Who they cited and what they say...
"Any time a war goes wrong on a defense secretary's watch, not only does history judge them poorly but their ability to get anything done is gravely damaged," [Loren Thompson, Lexington Institute]
What's not said is that the Lexington Institute is a DC think-tank dedicated to advancing big military spending programs like the B-2 bomber and a long-time foe of Rumsfeld and his "streamlining initiative".
"He's already been weakened by the failures in Iraq... He can't possibly make a controversial decision without risking an uproar" [Lawrence J. Korb, Center for American Progress]
Korb is introduced in the article as "a defense official in the Reagan administration" Sounds like a Republican right? That's what your meant to think. Later on they mention he is a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress which is described as "a policy research group in Washington". Sounds non-partisan, right? Sure, because they left out the part about it being a funded by George Soros as part of the CAP-Air America Radio-Media Matters for America "vast left-wing conspiracy" troika.
"The near-real-time history being written hasn't been particularly kind to Rumsfeld" [Andrew Krepinevich, Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessment]
Krepinevich is the only non-partisan source in the article and, of course, his quote is hardly the alarmist propaganda screaming from the headline. In other words, this is a perfect story for Keith because he has a legitimate news source, Bloomberg, gets to quote a "former Reagan official" ripping Rumsfeld and wrap it all up in a "defense analysts say" package. --RC
Michelle Malkin is getting a lot of attention for her post THE MOONBATS STRIKE BACK
At Newsbusters, Noel Sheppard writes Keith Olbermann Wrongly Declares Michelle Malkin Today's 'Worst Person in the World'
We here at Olbermann Watch welcome the clear-thinkers who are coming to understand the menace to clear-thinking that is Keith Olbermann:
Six Meat Buffet has some unhappy thoughts about KO in his post, The Olbermann Report
Expose the Left has the video of the ratings-starved KO finding any excuse to mention Bill O'Reilly on Countdown (with video). Can you say "one trick pony"?
Lead and Gold cites OlbermannWatch
A List Review chimes in on Malkin as WPITW
MacStansbury explains the meaning of "press release" to KO.
Pretend Pundits has the WPITW video of Malkin
Junkyard Blog slams Olby for naming Malkin WPITW
Captain's Quarters writes: "Even better, leading MS-NBC nutcase Keith Olbermann picked the day when a suicide bomber killed nine people at a falafel stand to choose Michelle as his World's Worst Person of the Day -- for reprinting the information organizers proudly publicized themselves. Even the Daily Kos crowd figured that much out."
This post at Scott Allan World does not mention Olby but has a cool feature that I have never seen before: you can click a button and the blog will READ THE POST TO YOU.
Ace of Spades tells readers "Make sure you check out the video of Keith "Who am I? Even I don't know" Olbermann at the end. What a c***s****er. Really-- the unhinged left blogosphere (the only people watching him) tell him to jump and he asks, "How high? And then who should I give the first handjob to?""
Joe Gandelman at The Moderate Voice notes Olby's role
Brian Maloney weighs in at The Radio Equalizer
Michelle Malkin was on internet radio to discuss the controversy - there might be a PODcast laying around.
Gee, this is starting to sound like Marisa McNee writ large.
Of course we all know that is a terrible thing to publish information that is intended to be public, right?
Based on their previous KO posts, I think we are going to need to blogroll a few of these fellows:
Ever wonder what Olby Loons do when they are not trolling on Olbermann Watch?
Jump on over to the Keith Olbermann entry at Wikipedia and see. If you want a good laugh check out their version of a NPOV (that's Neutral Point of View) entry for KO.
I have made edits to the entry over the last couple of weeks only to see them "reverted" by the Olby Loons. Now they've banned me for - get this - too many "reverts". Of course, I'm not making reversions to previous editions of the entry...they are. But one of the Olby Loons has been around long enough that they have been granted the status of "admin" and are now abusing their ability to "ban" editors to ban me. We all know how this works where in OlbyWorld black is white and white is black so reverting my edits is actually me reverting their edits. Can you say "cloud cuckoo land",
The chief loon over at KeithOlbermann.org has been trying to promote her hapless site via Wikipedia and had this typical libnut exchange with waffleiron who is actually D-Day from Things I passionately dislike which I mentioned the other day for their hilarious "OlbermannWatchWatch" post. Even OlbyLoon D-Day wasn't buying it...
I did not delete anyone else's site, and I would appreciate it if folks would stop deleting mine.[KO.org loony girl]
Wikipedia is not a venue for you to promote a website you own. You admit you just created it and you are using this to increase your traffic. That's advertising and therefore fails according to WP:SPAM --waffle iron 23:17, 10 February 2006 (UTC)
Not at all--the fact that I created the site does not prevent me from noting it's existance. I happened to notice it first since I wrote it. It is not spam.
Try again. - The preceding unsigned comment was added by 126.96.36.199 (talk â€¢ contribs) .
If you scroll down you will find an entry I made to the discussion page:
Entire Keith Olbermann Entry Massively non-NPOV in which I fisk the Keith Olbermann entry.
There is a similarily aburd entry for Countdown with Keith Olbermann where they, from time to time, permit mention of "OlbermannWatch". Of course, it's in their usual lefty-slanted style.
As they have seen fit to ban me (for 24 hours) perhaps some of you clear-thinking OlbyWatch readers would care to contribute to Wikipedia. It's really easy - you just click on EDIT THIS PAGE and make edits directly into the HTML. If you don't know how to do that you are more than welcome to copy/paste my version into a text editor and use that as the basis for your edits...just copy/paste into the edit field on the Wikipedia sight and press save. Careful not to do this more than three times in 24 hours or you will be banned too.
They seem to revert the changes between 10-75 minutes after I make them so if we had maybe 10 people willing to edit the page for NPOV and each makes three edits a day we ought to keep up with these Olby Loons and give a more balanced account of Keith Olbermann.
BTW, I am not advocating anything untoward here. I do believe my edits to the site are very fair and I am not looking to post bad things about Keith Olbermann but if you read Entire Keith Olbermann Entry Massively non-NPOV you will see that they have basically turned the entry in a Keith Olbermann Fan Site.
They must be stopped before they Wiki again!!!!!
"COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00-9:00 P.M. ET)
Host: Keith Olbermann
RUMSFELD UNDER ATTACK: Lt. Gen Bernard Trainor, Co-Author of "Cobra II";
Thomas DeFrank, New York Daily News
BARRY BONDS GRAND JURY INVESTIGATION: Stan Brand, attorney who has
"The Rummy Rebellion"
For the discerning viewer, the opening tease that Keith Olbermann screams at viewers is often a useful harbinger of what to expect for the rest of the hour. On Friday's Countdown, Olby was at it again:
The President says he won't listen to the generals who used to be on the ground. Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, Mister Bush says, is exactly what is needed at this critical period.
KO could have said he "won't listen to six generals", but, you know, that just doesn't have the same ring as saying that "Mister" Bush won't listen to "the generals". You know, all of 'em, en-masse. Sometimes OlbySpin is so unsubtle as to be anvilicious. Other times, all you need is some semantical trickery to set the day's talking points. Olby continued:
They fear one civilian has taken over the military, with disastrous consequences for the nation and its fighting men.
Maybe we're old fashioned, but one of the things they drummed into us in civics class was "civilian control of the military". Isn't this why President Bush--err, sorry, "Mister" Bush--is the Commander in Chief? Well, you can't expect Krazy Keith, who doesn't even know who's in the Cabinet, to master such challenging, complex matters.
After reading the statement of Rumsfeld support from "Mister" Bush and permitting a ten-second clip of the Defense Secretary, the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann sung the praises of the half-dozen dissenting generals ("any number of stars and stripes", "vast experience on the ground") and quoted from their statements. No background or quotes were given for any of the generals who have made statements in support of Rumsfeld, including Gen Richard Myers.
When Olby introduced Bernard Trainor as "cogent" and "no-nonsense", we knew that something was up. Trainor himself has blasted Rumsfeld on more than one occasion, and served up the predictable allegations that everyone other than Rumsfeld, Bush, and Cheney, was out of the decision-making loop. This happens to directly contradict what Myers has claimed, but it's useless wondering when KO will ever allow anything other than his own agenda to be heard on The Hour of Spin. Trainor went on to humbly suggest that it was his book that ignited the great revolt of a half-dozen ex-generals.
Next up in the Olbermann Echo Chamber was Tom DeFrank of the Daily News, with his unique take on the situation. The President expressed support for Rumsfeld, and so that hurts Bush. There are "hundreds of admirals and generals" who are against Rumsfeld, and that hurts Bush. Rumsfeld is a lightning rod for criticism, and that hurts Bush. But then again, you can't separate him from the President, and that hurts Bush. More generals are going to come forward, and that hurts Bush. Jack Bauer is in trouble on '24', and that hurts Bush. My 7-11 sandwich was stale, and that hurts Bush.
In the #4 slot: When Animals Attack! (courtesy of a taped NBC report). Snakes Gone Wild! (regurgitated from the network mothership). After "oddball", it was the return of the Barry Bonds Steroidapalooza! A grand jury is looking into charges of perjury. A recycled NBC report gave the details (the budget for Countdown must be roughly that of Wayne's World). KO stumbled his way through a bungled introduction of his expert witness, Stanley Brand. Yes, the same Stanley Brand who not that long ago was Olby's expert witness about hunting accidents and the Cheney "coverup". On Countdown, even the sports coverage is larded with Democrat Spinmeisters.
The #2 story was a kitty trapped in the walls of a New York building. Countdown spared no expense to cover this story: another regurgitated taped piece, this time from the NBC local station. Then celebrity news, including a candidate for New Orleans mayor who represented a photo from Disneyland as being her standing in the real New Orleans. It was all played for yucks by Keith, who somehow did not get around to mentioning her party affiliation (D). Of course, when a GOP candidate puts up an erroneous photo, not only does KO trumpet his Republicanism as a key element of the story, he highlights it in is "worst person" segment. The #1 story was True Crime Caught on Tape (yet another taped rerun from NBC).
In the Media Matters Minute, Keith pulled a hat-trick. All three choices fit the categories dictated by Olbermann's propaganda machine: republican, conservative, or Fox News employee. So we got Ann Coulter, Rush Limbaugh, and Mr Bill O'Reilly (attack #78), who naturally was named "worst". His crime was saying there is no "war on Easter", when a few days earlier he allegedly said the opposite. (Actually, the segment on Tuesday was with Newsweek's Jon Meacham, who wrote a book about religion's role in the history of America. There was no discussion of Easter at all in the interview, only one mention in the setup that there have been legal actions filed objecting to symbols of Christian holidays like Christmas and Easter.)
Then with a note of triumphalism, Olby cackled that O'Reilly reversed himself again, because tonight he has another segment on Easter under attack. Crack journalist and brilliant researcher Keith Olbermann got that information from O'Reilly's website, but never even bothered to click the link, where it clearly states it was a rebroadcast from March. (In the segment, Mr Bill never claims there is a war on Easter, and instead makes fun of the incident in question as "just dumb".) In fact, the entire O'Reilly Factor tonight is a rerun from three weeks ago. And it will still attract more viewers than Meltdown.
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 56th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
The Olby Loons over at Olbermann.org just can't get enough of talking about OlbermannWatch, the clear-thinking contributors and commenters who populate the site with hard-hitting analysis of Keith Olbermann and his minions on Countdown.
Here is a roundup of recent posts from the TinFoilHat crowd.
it has the nerve to say it's "reality-based news for the belligerently uninformed"
Well that "belligerently uninformed" moniker was bestowed upon that site's founder, Robert Cox, by KO himself.
oh those bastards! how can they hate keith
Keith could use the extra veiwers
Michael (site admin) wrote:
I haven't gone to this site because I know how they work, and I would certainly be banned quickly when they discovered I didn't toe their swift boat line... (I gues you would tow a swift boat?) anyway--those boards sometimes even require comments to be approved in advance.
Michael, I've posted comments on the olbermannwatch site before, and they do go right through... but it doesn't matter what you say if it's in defense of KO. They always have a negative response at the ready.
I don't think we are ready for those folks here, yet. I think we need 100 or so solid Keith supporters so we can beat the trolls back. We are getting there though, 20 real users in less than a week! :D
Be careful of Cox. He has a creepy history of invading the private lives of people who post opposing viewpoints on OW.
Anyone with that sort of agenda has to have something misfiring under the hood. It is just a weblog anyway, not a real site.
I don't even bother wasting my time with OlbermannWatch and its wacko in charge. He obviously has a bit of an envy problem regarding Mr. O and it's not going to be resolved no matter how many of us rail at him. I expect that with time he will shrivel and die.
the only reason i can see for anyone hating KO is ignorance. he's sarcastic, but that's not it. he makes a lot of oblique and obscure references that he doesn't bother to explain and certainly never dumbs down. stupid people would have to really concentrate and most likely have some reference materials handy to follow it. and nobody likes feeling stupid. that's my theory. one thing about KO throughout his whole career - if you can't hang, he ain't gonna drag ya. the rest who don't like him are knee-jerk automatons that aren't interested in his common sense because it isn't draconian enough for them, so they don't get that feeling of false moral superiority that makes them so comfortable. these gastropods eat up every word Bill O'Reilly says and continue to do so even after KO exposes him for making stupid claims like he did about a college footbal career not to mention MAKING UP THE NEWS OUT OF WHOLE CLOTH! war on Xmas, my ass! how does he still have a job? he's no better than Jayson Blair, and that's just sad. if he wasn't such an ass---- i'd pity him. but he brings it upon himself. O'Reilly is badly out-foxed. pun definitely intended.
I was over on OW, but I decided to leave after getting trashed as a "moonbat liberal". BTW, that is now attached to my MSN profile. As many have said, hurl liberal at me like a slur and I will pick it up and wear it as a badge of honor.
If there are people from this site who are using "sockpuppets" to troll over on OW, please stop. We ask that people don't troll us because it lowers the level of the debate. We should reciprocate that feeling with sites that we don't like.
I don't like them any more than the rest of you, but posting juvenile messages does nothing but make them think we can't engage on the issues.
I agree Trekkie. It's already difficult enough to have a discussion with the people over there.
I can take criticism and humor directed at KO if it's worthwhile and funny, but most everything I read over there is either completely untrue, childish bashing, or deliberate obtuseness. It's really not worth wasting ones' time or brain cells on such a close-minded group as OW.
i whole-heartedly agree. we're above that sort of thing. let's make this the (relatively) classy KO site. personally, i don't give OW the time of day. the guy who runs that thing is a moron. we're so out of his league. let's act that way.
i actually feel sorry for some of these people, many of whom are no doubt big O'Reilly fans. i think Gene Wilder's Waco Kid in Blazing Saddles said it best:
"...you've gotta remember that these are just simple farmers. these are people of the land. the common clay of the New West. you know... morons."
Gee,how odd I think OW is great.JD's daily critique of Kountdown is always right on the money and there are a few really amusing writers.My new favorite is Patrick Fegan,he's very witty and has posted some very clever limericks.Take a look you'll enjoy them.
1. The WaPo article on Keith got picked up by FireDogLake (who was then linked at CrooksAndLiars), so an influx of KO fans has emerged on OW to challenge the powers that be there (and these are not the trolls I spoke of earlier).
2. As a consequence, OW has taken to "tagging" certain posters of the opposite viewpoint with labels such as "Typical Libnut", "KO Kook", "Olby Loon", "Tin Foil Hatter", etc.
Yeah, they've done that for a long time now. It's easier to hang a "this person is stupid" sign on someone's post than to demonstrate that you're right through actual debate.
He also recently butchered the wiki KO article, but his changes have already been reverted.
I should have clarified - I meant tagging in the literal sense. A small graphic is added on to the "dissenting view" by someone with access to the OW source code.
Yeah, I know. They've done that for a long time.
You really have to wonder why so many people would watch a show night after night if they hate it. Do all those commenters over at OW really watch? Or are they just commenting based on what Cox or Johhny Dollar writes? I understand that in order to state your dislike for something you have to watch a number of times - or you are not being fair. But every night? That's just weird. And the comments are extremely personal. Not professional or distanced in any way. They speculate on Keith Olbermannn's hair, his sanity, his sexuality, and everything else. I suppose that would make sense if you LIKED the guy, but if you dislike him it is just too weird. Some sort of negative obsession thing going on.
Not only do they (I'm assuming there's more than one person over there making those posts and comments, but you never know!) watch new broadcasts OF Countdown every night, but they apparently rewatch KO's appearances on other shows (Q&A) and old CD broadcasts. It's just sorta weird, overall.
As I surf around I run cross various links that don't really warrant their own post but are KO-relevant nonetheless so in the interest of completness and because it's a Friday afternoon and I want to clean up my KO file here they are....
Some old anti- OlbermannWatch that made me laugh...and which are even funnier because like all liberal loons this blogger blathered on six months ago and then did nothing. To quote Nelson - "har, har"
Three posts from Things I passionately dislike
Bob Cox's obessesion with Keith Olbermann continues to be relentless. In his recent entry on Olbermannwatch, Coxxy scolds Keith for showing a montage of clips of federal officials, yet not showing any of the local officials. Perhaps he should have done so, yes, but the slap face is the comment about "OlbyPlanet."
Bob Cox is at it again. Obviously bored because no self-respecting pre-school anywhere will take him, he has nothing better to do with his time than attack Keith Olbermann on Olbermannwatch
Mr. Cox, just a fair warning. Everytime you update Olbermannwatch, you can expect a reply from me. And believe me, I will expose the truth. I will keep my blog going on other topics, but be warned; I am keeping an eye on you.
This IS a classic and well worth the read...
April 3, 2006 -- Oppression of journalists in the United States. Get used to it until Bush and his gang are gone. Three incidents point to continued White House-inspired oppression of journalists who oppose vocally and in writing the policies of the Bush regime. For those who constantly criticize the main stream media for their lack of spine, three incidents point to the fact that some in the main stream are and have put much on the line, including their jobs, in going after the Bush tyranny.
Then there is the silly (but apparently well-coordinated) campaign by Bill O'Reilly to have MS-NBC's Keith Olbermann fired. O'Reilly's campaign has now been joined by a web site called Olbermann Watch. The Olbermann Watch was registered on November 29, 2004 by a New Rochelle, NY-based blog called The National Debate that has links to various right-wing blogs, including, you guessed it, the Drudge Report, which received one of Mr. Green's leaked emails. There is enough here that points to a RICO civil suit against these right-wing bloggers and operatives who are engaged in a conspiracy intent on harassing anti-Bush journalists and seeking to have them fired.
I can think of two current TV news show hosts who still seem to work hard at maintaining their integrity: Keith Olbermann, who takes on the propaganda machine each weeknight in his "Worst Person in the World" segment on MSNBC's "Countdown"; and Bob Costas, who refused to host an episode of CNN's "Larry King Live" because the topic of the show was the already overdone disappearance of Natalee Holloway.
A commenter to this post writes:
The best website is www.olbermannwatch.com
"If you want the truth about this wack job
Rush is slime but that makes him the "Worst Person in the World"
I think Olby is the Worst person in the world for sinking to the depths of Rush with hate speech."
We may be fairly accused of beating up on cable news, but it's hard to resist when cable news beats up on itself. Case in point: the O'Reilly/Olbermann smackdown. Keith Olbermann, host of MSNBC's "Countdown," has a weekly segment called [CHUCKLES] "The Worst Person in the World," and frequently awards that honor to Bill O'Reilly, of Fox's "O'Reilly Factor." Recently, O'Reilly cracked. He said anyone who spoke Olbermann's name on his program would hear from "Fox Security" and apparently, at least one caller to his radio show already has. We gathered actual tape of the feuding hosts, set their voices to music, and yes, embellished the tale just a little. Think of it as "Behind the Music" for cable news nerds
Just because these people are deranged does not mean they can't come up with a good web page, after all even a blind squirrel finds an acorn every now and then. I only wish they'd indicate how comprehensive this page is - do the names include EVERY guest on the show?
Dan Patrick exposes "Liberal Keith" on ESPN Radio on March 30, 2006
"Let's just drop that...", says Keith.
Ever wonder how a KO fan would write up a Countdown review? Wonder no more in this post from April 10th, 2006.
Of MSNBC's Keith Olbermann - with whom he shares a penchant for provoking Bill O'Reilly whenever possible - he says "I love Keith. I think he's really funny. And I think he's very smart. I like his politics. Clearly he's one of the few people who doesn't allow the kind of intimidation by this White House that they do. They basically say "If you don't tow the line, we won't give you our guests. You won't have access to Cheney and all.' And he says "screw it.'"
Buffalo News edits OlbermannWatch out of Kurtz profile of KO.
Too bad the Iranians don't show up in the Nielsen Ratings...
From my web server logs from earlier today:
Domain Name (Unknown)
IP Address 217.172.99.# (Ministry Of Foreign Affairs of Iran)
ISP Parscyberian Consultants
Continent : Asia
Country : Iran, Islamic Republic of (Facts)
State/Region : Chahar Mahall va Bakhtiari
City : Irancheh
Lat/Long : 32.0922, 51.0289 (Map)
Operating System Unknown Unknown
Browser Netscape 3.01
Time of Visit Apr 13 2006 8:19:31 pm
Last Page View Apr 13 2006 8:19:31 pm
Referring URL unknown
Time Zone unknown
Visitor's Time Unknown
Visit Number 1,006,898
Host: Keith Olbermann
POLITICS - CIA LEAK CASE: MSNBC's David Shuster; Newsweek's White House Correspondent Richard Wolffe
SHOULD RUMMY RESIGN?: MSNBC Military Analyst & Retired Army Col. Jack Jacobs
WHAT WOULD BRANGELINA'S BABY LOOK LIKE?: MSNBC's Monica Novotny
"Hooked on a Filing"
When you hear Keith Olbermann say something in the Countdown opening spiel, the odds are pretty good he's fabricating again. Thursday night was no exception:
Scooter Libby says he knows whodunit, knows who probably leaked Valerie Plame Wilson's identity: Karl Rove and former press secretary Ari Fleischer.
Krazy Keith went on to claim Libby was "pointing the finger of blame" at Rove and Fleischer, but do the quotes Olby bellowed from the latest court filings bear this out? Um, no. The filings note that Rove "allegedly" spoke of Plame. There is no indication in the filings that Libby claims to know, it's only what has already been reported or alleged. And as for Fleischer, the quote cited by KO doesn't mention Plame at all, and just says that Fleischer had a key role in rebutting Wilson's charges.
Scooter Libby throws Karl Rove and Ari Fleischer under the bus
More accurately: Keith Olbermann throws them under the bus, by hyping and distorting what was said in the filings. Obviously The Great Leak Case was the top story. Aha, a great opportunity for Olby to correct his false report about the contents of the NIE. Err, it didn't come up. The doubly discredited David Shuster made an appearance. Another opportunity: he can finally get around to reporting on Prosecutor Fitzgerald's latest embarrassing mistake. Um, well, that didn't come up either. But instead of reporting hard facts we got Olby asking Dave stuff like:
Is this not a political disaster for the White House?
All viewers of The Hour of Spin know that when Krazy Keith asks a leading question, the answer never strays far from it:
It's a political disaster, and that's the way this case is going.
Then came a prime moment of Olby Surrealism, where white becomes black and up becomes down:
One last logistical thing that I'm not following here, maybe you can clear this up for me. In the filings, Libby's people say that Libby was not instructed by the President or the Vice-President to disclose the identity of Valerie Plame.
Minutes earlier, the filings were described as Libby "pointing the finger of guilt" and throwing people "under the bus". But with this quote from the very same filings, now it's just "Libby's people" who merely "say" that the President and the VP were not involved. Note the subtle shift in OlbySpeak. Keith continues:
I don't recall someone saying that Mr Libby had been accused of that or that, that, that, that was central any more to this case.
Really? You just gave us screaming headlines, and spent precious broadcast time discussing the issue of who leaked Plame's name, based on these same filings. Now, because instead of "implicating" (according to you) two people, he exonerates two people, all of a sudden this issue is irrelevant. It has nothing to do with the case. Pay no attention to it. The infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann contradicts himself all the time, but it's not every day he does so within the space of two minutes.
Olby went on to flog yesterday's story about the trailers. Another opportunity: tell the truth about the DIAC/CIA report. Well, KO mentioned it, pretending that Scott McClellan came up with this defense today. But that's another lie: he did so yesterday, and Keith just chose to ignore it. Apparently Olby needed an additional 24 hours to think up some way to spin this document. He came up with a really original notion: the administration was "cherry-picking intelligence" (Democrat talking point #76), and Countdown Crony Richard Wolffe was quick to agree. They went on to talk about the Libby filings that are either headline news or unimportant, depending on whether they buttress or negate OlbySpin.
There should be little suspense about the #4 segment. If a retired General speaks ill of the administration, Krazy Keith rushes to the story like a pig to truffles. After a regurgitated setup piece that only showed clips of Generals critical of Donald Rumsfeld, Col Jack Jacobs, an MSNBC expert, was brought in. Jacobs parroted what another A-Mess-NBC expert said in the taped report ("poor judgment"). So what is Keith Olbermann not telling us this time?
It would be, in my mind, ludicrous for him to resign, or ask for his resignation.
Who said that? Olby? David Shuster? No, that was today's statement from Gen Mike DeLong, former Deputy Commander of CentCom. Did you hear that on Countdown? Of course not. Keith Olbermann works overtime to make sure his show offers the full range of opinion: everything from A to B.
After oddball, Krazy Keith turned to the Duke rape investigation, via a taped report from Dan Abrams. Left out of the coverage were two points. 1: the political pressure on the prosecutor who faces his first election in a matter of weeks with a heavily black electorate. And 2: the ethical standards of the prosecutor, who has made public statements about his personal beliefs regarding the crime, and just today stated that he's not going to let a bunch of LaCrosse players rape a girl from Durham--when charges have not even been filed yet! Of course Olby considers these aspects irrelevant; it has nothing to do with the fact that the prosecutor is a Democrat. Another regurgitated NBC report covered a sexual predator who broke parole by contacting her victim.
There was more True Crime in the #2 slot, and another dose of celebrity news (Brittney Spears! Brad Pitt!). The Transportation Security Administration was "worst person" for a foul-up involving an Iraq veteran on the no-fly list. Then the longest sixty minutes in all of television cratered to a conclusion with Monica Novotny's report on made-up celebrity photographs. A fitting end to a program that presents made-up news.
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 55th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
--synopsis by johnny dollar
There was so much to cover on Wednesday's Countdown. In addition to the real news of the day, look at what else Keith Olbermann had on his plate: correction and apology for his false statement about the contents of the NIE; correction and apology for his unsubstantiated "report" that the White House was complicit in an election-day crime; correction and apology for his smear of Brit Hume...and these are just from the last two days! How did Olby do? Let's find out.
True to form, the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann told his first lie just seconds after 8:00 pm, referring to the alleged mobile weapons labs in Iraq:
Not only weren't they mobile weapons labs, but the President knew they weren't mobile weapons labs from the very start. How Nixonian is this?
You see, two days after a report that concluded they weren't weapons labs, President Bush was still saying that they were. Aha! Another Gotcha! from Krazy Keith. But what is Olbermann not telling us this time?
After ticking off a list of so-called "scandals", some arguable, some imagined, KO called in his favorite felon, the disbarred ex-con John Dean, world-renowned expert on WMDs and Iraq. They talked about Scott McClellan, but for some reason Olby, who loves lengthy montages from the press briefings, was very stingy with video clips today. Might that be because McClellan produced the DIAC/CIA report we mentioned above, the one that exposes KO's opening spiel as another lie? And if Olbermann is going to hide the real news, he can't very well have McClellan showing him up as a liar on The Hour of Spin. So they blathered on the preliminary report, without so much as a syllable about the DIAC/CIA report.
As if all this weren't enough, KO complained that classified material is being declassified "seemingly at whim". Funny, when eight pages of the NIE were declassified in 2003, Olbermann couldn't have cared less. He didn't even think it was newsworthy. But now it's part of a cavalcade of scandals.
In the #4 slot, the subject was Iran, and Bush-hater Jonathan Alter was the interview guest. Apparently he was there to balance Joe Wilson from yesterday. KO talked about the President being "diminished" and Alter did his echo-chamber bit. After "oddball", Pete Williams gave a report on the Moussaoui trial. The #2 story was about Prince Harry, via a recycled tape from ITV. Then celebrity news, and in the #1 slot, more celebrity news!
The worst people in the world were the owners of the Wolverine Meat Packing company. They fired 15 employees who skipped work to attend the illegal immigration rallies. And what is Keith not telling us this time? Employees were warned, and those who asked ahead of time for the day off were given the day off, and not fired. See how easy it is to distort the news? Just tell half the truth. We should count ourselves lucky. A lot of the time, Krazy Keith doesn't even give us half.
Dogs that did not bark? The biggest, loudest canine was The Great Leak Case. Every time Libby blows his nose, Olby uses it as an excuse to trot out the doubly discredited David Shuster to speculate and spin. On Tuesday there was much talk about what Wednesday's filings would bring. There were actual developments today, but KO totally ignored The Great Leak Case. Why would that be? Perhaps because the developments involved Prosecutor Fitzgerald, who had to correct a false filing about--guess what--the NIE!
Fitzgerald's error led the New York Times and other papers to erroneously report that Libby was falsifying the contents of the NIE. Fitz claimed Libby was telling people that Iraq seeking uranium was a key finding in the NIE, and the Times railed about no it wasn't, it was just a finding, not a key finding (there is a significant difference). Of course, KO took it a step further on Monday, compounding the felony by falsely asserting that the uranium claim was not a judgment in the NIE (it was), and digging himself in even deeper by claiming the NIE made no mention of the uranium business at all!
Obviously, bringing any of this up would just be another embarrassment for the Countdown host, so it was ignored on tonight's Hour of Spin. And what of yesterday's smear of Brit Hume with a phony, doctored quote? Well, you know, there was big Brittney Spears news, and KO simply didn't have the time to admit he's been caught in another lie. Could it be any more clear that Krazy Keith hosts the most biased hour of "news" on television? Can anyone doubt that Olbermann himself is no journalist, but rather an arrogant, partisan hack?
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 54th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
UPDATE: Doug Krile challenges Olbermann Watch in his post, Looks Like ABC Wasn't The Apologizer at The WB42 5:30 Report With Doug Krile. I set Krile straight with a brilliant reply in his comments section explaining how the MSM plays games with "corrections" or "clarifcations".
Host: Keith Olbermann
MORE BAD NEWS FOR PRES. BUSH?: Joby Warrick, Washington Post investigative reporter; John Dean, fmr. White House counsel and author of "Worse Than Watergate"
CAN THE PRESIDENCY BE SAVED?: Jonathan Alter, Newsweek columnist and NBC News political analyst
MORE BRITNEY SPEARS BABY MISHAPS: Harvey Levin, managing editor of tmz.com
Let's go out on a limb and make a prediction as a way to demonstrate how KO corrupts the news in order to reach out to that lucrative audience of 164,000 25-54 old viewers:
WaPo writer Joby Warrick who has recently extensively on WMD issues in Russia, Iran, Iraq and elsewhere will appear on Countdown tonight to discuss his "blockbuster" report on today's front page of the Washington Post:
Lacking Biolabs, Trailers Carried Case for War - Administration Pushed Notion of Banned Iraqi Weapons Despite Evidence to Contrary By Joby Warrick, Washington Post Staff Writer, Wednesday, April 12, 2006; Page A01
I've looked at some of Warrick's past articles for the WaPo going back to 2002 and it would be hard to argue that he is some partisan hack. He seems to know what he is talking about and to be a straight shooter. Given this, you can expect Warrick to note (as KO attempts to gloss over) that the White House issued an ANGRY denial of the claim which predicates Warrick's report: that Bush KNEW that the trucks found in Iraq which were originally thought to be mobile weapons labs were later determined not to be but told the world that they WERE mobile weapons labs anyway. KO will seek to keep the focus on the now stale news - the claim in the report - to push forward the idea that Bush knew the trucks were not mobile biological labs when he claimed they were (i.e., "Bush Lied") while ignoring the White House response at today's White House presser or, more importantly, a key fact revealed in a Reuters report published just 4 hours ago:
A report which includes the following:
A U.S. intelligence official, speaking to Reuters on condition of anonymity, confirmed the existence of the field report cited by the Post, but said it was a preliminary finding that had to be evaluated.
"You don't change a report that has been coordinated in the (intelligence) community based on a field report," the official said. "It's a preliminary report. No matter how strongly the individual may feel about the subject matter."
Don't expect to hear the words "field report" or "preliminary report" from KO (except that he's probably reading this post and trying to figure out a way to rework his script to "undermine" me, his chief critic)
Why, you wonder, is John Dean ALSO booked to discuss the WaPo report. Does the former Nixon lawyer have some valuable insight into the inner workings of the Iraq Survey Group? Some deep knowledge of the inner workings on the U.S. Intelligence services? Of course not, Dean is there because he is so desperate to promote his pathetic career as an "author" that he will say and do whatever KO wants which, as usual, boils down to variations of "Bush Lied".
And of course, dependable Bush-basher Jonathon Alter will balance out the show with a breathless "analysis" of whether the Bush presidency can be "saved".
Whatever the outcome you can bet KO will spend a good deal of time teasing a story destined to be the #1 story (i.e. the story we tease with you for 52 minutes) of the day. As a public service, we'll save you the trouble of enduring Keith further and tell you the "big news" is"
Britney Spears and her husband, Kevin Federline, received a visit from the Los Angeles Department of Children and Family Services over the weekend, along with a Sheriff's deputy.
Good night, and good luck.
The left's least favorite liberal blogger, Bob Somerby takes KO and his MSNBC minions to task over at The Daily Howler with two acerbic posts. I've included some but certainly not all of the best lines:
his presentations on Countdown are often weak, and the hour-long program is simply larded with fluff, tomfoolery and filler. (His choice of guests tends to be weak and repetitive.)
Playing the role of perfect parrots, many activist liberal sites have recently been pimping propaganda about Countdown's wondrous success in the ratings. But uh-oh! The presentations have been rather selective.
Good God! [The L.A. Times wrote] "Countdown attracted 164,000 of these prized viewers [viewers ages 25-54], smashing Zahn's 156K". These are utterly tiny numbers, attained by a frequently lazy program. But so what? Liberal sites swung into action, announcing nirvana was here.
Olbermann's program is often lazy and weak-but the activist sites are eager to pimp it. They're willing to settle for tiny, small crumbs - and to treat you like rubes in the process.
Somehow, Shuster had managed to bungle this elementary fact [that the phrase 'vigorously trying to procure uranium" wasn't in the NIE declassified by Bush in July 2003...it was]. And omigod! An hour later, MSNBC sports expert Keith Olbermann bungled it too
Maybe if he spent his afternoons prepping for his program instead of talking sports on the radio, Olbermann could step up to the plate each night and air a competent, thorough news program. Last night, he totally bungled this elementary fact, then presented a strikingly short and lazy segment on the immigration demonstrations. It was total fluff and filler after that (as it is every evening-unless, of course, you need to know where Angelina will have her baby).
h/t to you know who...
The blue blogs who rally behind Keith Olbermann have sent a torrent of Olby Defenders to these pages. Some of them call names. Others post irrelevancies. Some of them adopt a more intelligent approach and address the points of controversy revolving around the "journalism" of Keith Olbermann.
Our synopsis of Tuesday's Countdown raised several specific issues with Mr Olbermann and his "newscast". Yet his defenders have suddenly been struck mute. Nobody wants to make an argument for the extremely specious reportage on Tuesday's Hour of Spin. Perhaps we need a new posting, and a new thread, to smoke out Olby's Army. Olbermann Watch wants to hear an honest analysis of these questions:
Host: Keith Olbermann
POLITICS: Dana Milbank, Washington Post national political reporter
Keep the Hume Fires Burning
On Tuesday's Hour of Spin, Krazy Keith was in his own special version of hog heaven. He had a new election conspiracy:
Innocent calls, or evidence the Bush White House may have helped obstruct a free and fair election?
And Olby found another terror trial "falling apart", putting this clip in his opening tease:
These people had no more to do with terrorism than the man in the moon.
Hey, throw in Tom Cruise and Michael Musto, and it could be Keith's Best Day Ever! Krazy started off with a bang, connecting Scooter Libby to James Tobin, and remarking that they represented:
a White House determined to win at any cost.
Olby claimed a scheme to prevent Democrats from making get-out-the-vote calls in 2002 has now been "tied directly to the Bush White House". This ought to be interesting. Prosecutor Olbermann laid out the evidence that this criminal act is "tied directly" to the White House:
Records showing that Mr Tobin, who was in charge of this scheme, made more than two dozen calls to the White House within a three-day period around the election.... Some might call that Nixonian.
Um, that's evidence that the illegal act is "tied directly to the White House"? Sure, that counts for evidence on OlbyPlanet. No need to know the purpose of the calls, what was said, or anything else. The fact that this guy called the White House proves the administration was in on a criminal act. Yes, it's OlbyLogic at its finest. It's also a hyperbolic stretch so extreme that it amounts to little better than another Olbermann lie.
Even Dana Milbank was reluctant to buy into Krazy Keith's Konspiracy, cautioning that Olby's theory was entirely circumstantial, and that we don't even know whom he talked to. "It's very hard to make a case", said Milbank, but KO had a backup argument for that too:
If the Prosecutor in the phone center jamming case does not need the White House phone calls in order to convict this man Tobin and two others, and so as a result we never find out who received the calls at the White House, is this likely ever to touch the President?
It's the Olbermann Kool-Aid PreEmptive Strike: when nothing comes of all this, KO can claim it's because the Prosecutor didn't dig deeply enough (see: Cheney hunting investigation), not because Olby basically lied about a connection he cannot prove.
Talk turned to The Great Leak Case again, and Milbank noted how the President still goes out to hostile crowds and takes questions. He does? How can that be? Not that long ago Keith opined that it was obvious there would be no more of these Q&A sessions. Olbermann as Nostradamus: no more accurate than Olbermann as Fake Newsman.
Any mention of The Great Leak Case is an excuse to drag in the discredited David Shuster. Talk about speculation and rumor: Shuster was there to guess what might be in paperwork that hasn't been filed yet! There is one upside to this--since the papers are all in Shuster's imagination, it's impossible for him to doctor any quotes from them. There was no news here, just an opportunity to flog another hobby horse dear to the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann.
The #4 story began with Krazy Keith drawing an analogy between Iraq and Iran, suggesting that "Mister" Bush lacks "street cred" to take any action against Iran. He mentioned Sy Hersh's disputed claim that we had ongoing operations on the ground in Iran (described by Olby as "CLAN-dis-TINE"), but didn't bother to note Pentagon denials of this dubious story, until near the end of an interview with Howard Fineman:
What kind of credibility does he [Bush] bring to a statement that includes the dismissal of the Sy Hersh report about military options against Iran, as "wild speculation"?
The Chameleon of Pundits responded just as Keith wanted ("Very little"), adding that Hersh knows all these Pentagon people. Now old Sy has gone off on a few wild goose chases in his time, but on The Hour of Spin, the only person whose credibility is impugned is George W Bush. Sy gets a pass.
After another awe-inspiring installment of "oddball", a regurgitated NBC report told about the Lodi, CA terror trial, deemed by Judge Olby to be "at best wobbly, at worst irretrievably lost". At least the report told us who that guy was that Keith featured in the opening tease, the one who insisted the defendants had nothing more to do with terrorism than "the man in the moon". It turns out he's a paid expert witness for the defendants! Now why do you suppose KO put that in the opening credits, rather than the hours and hours of secretly taped conversations that are the heart of the prosecution case? Apparently Olby's bosses required him to give at least passing notice to the ongoing Moussaoui trial that he ridiculed as a failure only a few weeks ago, via a two-minute recycled NBC report.
You'd think a segment on "paper, scissors, rock" would be relegated to the final segment, but Olbermann News Judgment elevated it (another regurgitated tape) to the #2 position. Celebrity news (with a healthy bit of self-promotion for NBC's morning team) and moon exploration theories rounded out the backwards newshour.
In the Media Matters Minute, we did not get Dick Durbin or Harry Reid claiming the Iraq War has lasted longer than World War II. We did get the obligatory Republican/conservative choice (Mrs Richard Mellon Scaife), and a Fox News employee (Brit Hume)--a twofer! So eager was Keith Olbermann to smear Mr Hume, that he...well...he went and lied again:
Can you abide somebody's characterizing yesterday's nationwide peaceful protest by immigrants the way he did, a "repellent spectacle"? Hey pal, I've seen your newscasts...
It's another Olby Classic. Shall we dissect this one?
Olby: "yesterday's nationwide peaceful protest".
Truth: the quote he gave from Mr Hume was spoken on April 2, 2006.
Olby: "Hey pal, I've seen your newscasts"
Truth: Hey Liar, if you had, you wouldn't have taken a quote from over a week ago (not from one of Mr Hume's newscasts, by the way) and claim it's something he said about yesterday's protests. What blue blog did you lift this item from, without bothering to determine its accuracy? A story "too good to check"? That applies to most everything on Countdown, thanks to your nonexistent journalistic ethics. As long as you can keep the fires burning among your crowd of Fox-haters, that's all that counts.
For the record, here is what Brit Hume actually said about yesterday's protests:
HUME: It was a very big set of demonstrations, started yesterday I guess with a big one in Dallas, and there were demonstrations here, in New York, in Phoenix and a number of other places. A big one in Atlanta. The one in Phoenix was absolutely huge. What about the likely political effect of these protests, Bill? The last time you remember, there were a lot of Mexican flags. They didn't have a lot of Mexican flags today. Today the flags, to the extent there were any, were virtually all American.
OK, what's the over/under on when Keith Olbermann will retract this latest smear and apologize? Rhetorical question only, since there are no numbers lower than absolute zero.
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 53rd day of The Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
Host: Keith Olbermann
THE CIA LEAK INVESTIGATION: fmr. acting U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Joseph Wilson
GOSSIP COLUMN EXTORTION: Deborah Schoeneman, author of "4% Famous: A Novel" and fmr. gossip writer for New York Magazine
CELEBRITY BABY NEWS: Michael Musto, Village Voice gossip columnist
"Good Old Mr Wilson"
He had a refreshing three-day weekend, but Monday night Keith Olbermann was back: man-tanned, rested, and ready to spin. All last week his nemesis, the evil Bill O'Reilly, was on vacation, with a string of substitute hosts taking his place. Even with this golden opportunity, KO was unable to get The Hour of Spin out of the ratings basement, losing by orders of magnitude to an O'Reilly who wasn't even there. But for a True Believer like the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann, the struggle never ends. Today is the first day of the rest of Countdown's life!
You may be under the impression that the big news today involved the rallies for illegal immigrants. You poor deluded soul. Olby knows better. The top story was really The Great Leak Case! And the propaganda started right at the top of the show:
Today [the President] spins the declassifying of a secret national intelligence estimate...
The President "regurgitates". The President "spins". That's our "nonpartisan" Olby. He went on to regurgitate the lie that the President claimed Iraq sought Uranium from Niger in the State of the Union address. All of this hoopla was to tee up Krazy Keith's slobbering interview with The Man himself, Joe Wilson, who whined about a "three-year smear campaign" and the "right-wing echo chamber".
This interview, as is the custom at The Hour of Spin, was really not about journalism. That concept implies probing questions, challenging inquiries, give and take. No, this was a typical Krazy Keith interview. Think Olby "grilling" Michael Schiavo. Or Al Franken. Or Lawrence O'Donnell. Or Jeanine Garafalo. Or John Dean. Or...well, you get the idea.
If KO actually wants to play at being a journalist, he might have made at least a token attempt at a few pointed questions. There are so many to choose from:
To escalate the spin to the next level, KO dragged in David Shuster to raise irrelevant "questions" like why was George Tenet not told? Was there some news here? Of course not. Just more speculation and amateur legal analysis from discredited Shuster. Meanwhile, while Krazy Keith loves to cite editorials from the likes of the Washington Post, he didn't bother to do so tonight. Could that be because they editorialized in support of the President's declassification? Ya think?
Nearly a third of the way into the show, Olby finally got around to reporting on the immigration issue. Naturally he led off with an anecdote chosen to fit his slant: a radio host who talked about shooting illegals. It was really the top story of the day, but on Countdown it was relegated to a brief, taped NBC report. And Krazy Keith, who was quick to cite polls to buttress his lead story, was oddly silent about the most recent Time poll on this one.
Oddball followed, then the #3 story: the scandal revolving around Page Six in the New York Post. KO made it about himself, citing some Olby baseball story that he claimed (unconvincingly) the paper got wrong. A recycled NBC piece took over from there. TV critic Ray Richmond was the interview guest. His politics match Olby's, and besides, he earned Keith's admiration by condemning The Passion of the Christ as "pornography". Incredibly, KO gave us another "Me! Me!" moment, recounting some other alleged slight to his dignity from the nefarious Page Six.
In the #2 slot: the Duke rape allegations fall apart; then another wonderful selection of celebrity news. The backwards newshour concluded with the creepy Michael Musto and still more celebrity news, featuring Olby fave Tom Cruise!
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 52nd day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
--synopsis by johnny dollar
I'm down in Nashville today and will be tied up the next two nights and so unable to watch Countdown. Thank goodness for OlbermannWatch where I can monitor KO without having to actually watch the unwatchable.
Here is a little trivia in the meantime:
Q1. I am in Nashville for...
a) To interview Mary Winkler, the preacher's wife murderer, in her jail cell in Selmer.
b) To attend the CMT Music Awards at the Grand Old Opry
c) To discuss blogging with Federal judges from around the county
d) To shoot amateur video of tornadoes
Q2. Keith Olbermann grew up in...
a) Leningrad, U.S.S.R.
b) Berkeley, CA
c) Hastings, NY
d) Cambridge, MA
Q3. I had lunch this after noon with...
a) a special assistant to then-Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy
b) a two-time Democratic nominee for Governor of Tennessee
c) a business partner of Bill Frist's father
d) the inspiration for the name of a character in a Warren Beatty movie
Click "read more" for the answers.
Q1. I'm here in Nashville to speak at the Justice & Journalism conference at the Freedom Forum's First Amendment Center at Vanderbilt University.
Q2. Keith Olbemann grew up in Hastings-on-Hudson and attended the Hackley School in Tarrytown, NY both just down the road from where I grew up in Irvington, NY.
Q3. If you said all of the above you'd be right. I had lunch with my good friend John Jay Hooker who has been all those things and more. It is not mentioned on Wikipedia but John Jay is good friends with Warren Beatty and appeared in Beatty's biopic of John "Ten Days That Shook The World" Reed as Senator Overman. Beatty also named the title character in his hilarious political farce, Bullworth after John Jay (Sen. Jay Billington Bulworth).
If you've read this far you are a devoted fan of the site so let me you to volunteer...
There are two KO "fanlistings" sites each with a couple dozen or so members. I always want to make the list of KO links on the right side of the home page as complete as possible. I need someone who can take an hour and review their sites and see if any of them ought to be listed on the Olby Watch home page. The URLS are...
I'd guess it would take less than an hour to review the site.
Keith Olbermann was missing from Friday's Countdown (was there a Man-Tan clearance sale tonight at K-Mart?). So it was completely appropriate that to guest host this hour of fake news, they brought in Brian Unger, from that other "fake news" program, The Daily Show. Unger, who claimed to have been
an English teacher the son of two English teachers, immediately displayed his ignorance of the language by claiming that the President, when he declassifies documents and releases them, is guilty of "leaking". That was enough for us; why put up with this chucklehead without even the silver lining of being able to mock Keith Olbermann?
Luckily, we can do that anyhow. As part of our never-ending research into the weird miasma that is Krazy Keith, we had the opportunity to peruse a transcript of Countdown from the mists of yesteryear: July, 2003. Things were a bit different; the opening spiel went:
Which of these stories will make the "big five" on tonight's edition of Countdown?
But even back then Olby was still full of himself, and still slanting the news:
A story of White House damage control that was all damage and little control.
Our "nonpartisan" Olbermann at his best. It turns out he was referring to a case about a tv newsman who reported that Iraq morale is low. It seems Matt Drudge had linked to that story on his website, and also to a feature on the reporter in the gay-activist publication "The Advocate". Keith, of course, had a theory: the White House told Drudge to do it!
Does this sound vaguely familiar? It should. It was just a few days ago that the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann was "reporting" that Drudge got a leaked abc producer's email from the White House. KO's source for this revelation? None...he made it up! And didn't bother to correct his fake "news" when the truth came out (it was a disgruntled ex-employee at abc). But wait...it gets better.
Olby brought on a reporter from the Washington Post to bolster his theory. In chatting with this respected journalist, Keith himself, without for a minute abandoning his holier-than-thou outrage at Drudge for linking to publicly available information about the reporter, tossed in this little stink bomb:
Can you explain why somebody would take, if you will, a gay story to Matt Drudge, when there have been countless articles about Matt Drudge's own lifestyle?
Ooooh. Take that! The interview proceeded along this line, KO wrapping it up with the traditional "many thanks for your time". Who would have guessed that Keith was chatting with a reporter who wrote "inaccurate, journalistically reckless stuff"? Who could predict that this honored Countdown guest would be deemed guilty of "disgraceful" writing, and "should be fired"? Yes, Olby's guest was none other than last month's "worst person", Lloyd Grove!
The big stories on this particular Countdown were Kobe Bryant, Iraq morale (and the evil Matt Drudge), internet music piracy, JFK memorabilia, and Kobe Bryant again. Must have been a light news day, July 18, 2003.
But actually it wasn't. Something did happen on July 18, 2003. That was the day that the major portions of the National Intelligence Estimate were released to the press. A few days earlier, some of this info had been given to the New York Times. That release was the Big News that dominated yesterday's Hour of Spin. Olby repeatedly called it a "leak". He suggested the President didn't have the authority to declassify this information. He referred to it as "secret", "sensitive" intelligence information. He demanded to know if CIA's Tenet was informed, and questioned whether some unnamed "procedure" was followed. And on and on and on--inaccurate, biased, slanted ravings that just happened to echo every last Democrat talking point.
But what about July 18, 2003, the day when a much larger chunk of "secret", "sensitive" information was given to the press? Information from that same NIE that Olby has been up in arms about? What was Olbermann's reaction on that day's Countdown (July 18, 2003) to that day's information release? Did he demand to know if it was properly declassified? Did he question the President's authority to release it? Did he speculate about whether George Tenet was involved? Did he bang his "nonpartisan" drum to protest such a large, unprecedented "leak" of "secret" information?
Umm, no. He couldn't have. He didn't even report it.
Guest Host: Brian Unger
WHITE HOUSE RESPONDS TO LIBBY'S CLAIM THAT PRES. BUSH AUTHORIZED THE LEAK OF CLASSIFIED INFORMATION: John Harwood, Wall Street Journal senior contributing writer and CNBC chief Washington correspondent; Lawrence O'Donnell, executive producer of "The West Wing"
Not with fans like Tara over at Olberfans
Keith, maybe the KO Fanatics can get her number for you!
Whenever The Great Leak Case is in the news, you can be sure that the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann will let his mania drive him over the top. Thursday's Countdown was no exception. Over a banner reading "White House Bombshell", he bellowed:
PlameGate reaches the Oval Office!
Olby called the release of NIE information a "leak", ran a clip of Bush decrying leaks of classified information, and promised that we'd hear from disbarred lawyer John Dean on the President's right to declassify. And Dean is a legal expert because...? Don't bother trying to figure that one out. It's OlbyLogic.
Krazy Keith continued to lie about today's news, asserting that:
The President of the United States was today placed for the very first time square in the middle of the chain of events that led to the outing of a covert CIA operative, the infamous PlameGate leak.
How many inaccuracies can KO squeeze into one sentence? First of all, the President's involvement was in the release of the National Intelligence Estimate, not Valerie Plame. And it was not the "very first time" either, since it was reported long ago that Libby said his "superiors" had authorized the NIE release. As for the "chain of events" leading to Plame? Olby made that up, since there is nothing to connect one with the other. Oh, and the "covert CIA operative"? Even Prosecutor Fitzgerald doesn't make that claim any more. Four falsehoods in one sentence. That may not be an Olbermann record, but it shows Krazy Keith was cranking on all cylinders.
Olby again called the NIE release a "leak", but didn't call the release of Libby's secret grand jury testimony a leak. Why is that? Then for the second time a clip of Bush talking about leaking classified information--essentially irrelevant, since the NIE release was neither classified nor a leak. But these are the sort of "gotcha" clips that Olby loves to run, and rerun, and rerun again, hoping that nobody will notice their immateriality.
The discredited David Shuster was called in to complain that the President didn't tell anyone that he authorized the release of the NIE, and went on to claim that the President "clearly set in motion a chain of events", and "at the very least you can suggest" that he "set in motion a chain of events" that led to Plame's outing. So did Bush "clearly" set the chain of events in motion, as Shuster said in the first half of his sentence, or is this chain of events something that "you can suggest", as he said in the second half of his sentence? Take your pick. You choose the spin--the newest exclusive feature on Countdown!
Just in case the propaganda wasn't poured on thickly enough, Olby decided to ask a hypothetical legal question selected from the Olbermann Wish-Fulfillment barrel:
What happens if the President did not actually have the authority to declassify documents in the manner that Scooter Libby describes?
And who better to provide an impartial, "expert" legal answer than the felon himself, John Dean, who, when asked if the President has that power, claimed there is "no quick answer" to that question. Converting that to honest verbiage, that translates to: "Yes, he does", but you'll never get honest verbiage out of Dean or Olbermann. Still, KO kept trying:
Does a declassification count if your CIA director doesn't even know about it?
Where does Krazy Keith get this stuff from? Dean wrung his hands and talked about "irregularities", another method of avoiding a direct answer, which, by the way, would be: "Yes, it does". KO continued to ask the disbarred ex-con about legal niceties; Olby won't ask an authentic legal expert since no lawyer worth his salt would swallow all of Olby's twisted theories. Then more about NSA wiretaps, another question Keith only asked because he knew what answer Dean would give: one that wouldn't make KO queasy by disagreeing with his spin. After all, we don't want to see Krazy Keith retching all over his desk.
When Countdown goes into spin overdrive, the lead story slops over into the #4 slot, and that happened again tonight, with Countdown Crony Dana Milbank (sans goofy outerwear) making yet another appearance. Olby framed the issue:
Will the Democrats take today's implication of the President in the classified leaks and sell it that way during the election campaign this fall?
A few minutes earlier, KO was trying his hardest to get Dean to say that the President can't declassify stuff. Even the felon wouldn't go that far, and Prosecutor Fitzgerald himself never questioned the President's power to declassify--another one of those little facts that is simply not reported on Countdown. Yet one commercial break later, Krazy Keith is back to referring to the information released as "classified". Hey, that's how propaganda works: repeat the talking points, no matter how baseless they are.
Olby quoted Charles Schumer as claiming the President "authorized those leaks in the first place". Hmm. Olbermann calls them leaks; Schumer called them leaks. If a talking point is on the lips of Democrats, it's on the lips of Keith Olbermann as well. Never mind the fact that a leak is an unauthorized release of information. How can a Presidentially authorized release of information be "unauthorized"? Too bad that basic question never occurred to Milbank. Like a good echo chamber puppet, he parroted Olby's twisted spin, ignoring the lack of substance and the sheer illogic of it all.
So we had 22 minutes on a small piece of news, falsely connected to Valerie Plame by a concocted, nonexistent "chain of events", all the while inflated, slanted, and distorted to serve Keith Olbermann's extremist agenda. Meanwhile, the historic immigration agreement in the Senate was dispensed with via a few throwaway sentences. It's that brilliant Olbermann News Judgment again.
After oddball, we got the nightly steroidapalooza, giving Keith the chance to include a self-serving plug for his exciting, cutting-edge sports radio gig. The #2 story was more self-promotion, this time for the mothership: all about the new host of NBC's Today, with a generous assortment of clips from the press conference. The #1 slot was reserved for the Countdown Apology Hall of Fame, featuring Cynthia McKinney.
In the Media Matters Minute, Olby found a Republican to make runner-up (Weldon of PA), but selected Bill O'Reilly as "worst person" (O'Reilly attack #77). His offense was to say that Hillary Clinton is likely to be tested by the terrorists if she becomes President. Man, that O'Reilly is evil. Pure evil. But wait. He said this back on Monday. Why did it take four days for Krazy Keith to pick up on it? Oh, that's right. Media Matters only put it up yesterday. Brock is going to have to be a little more prompt or KO's "worst person" will continue to be based on stale, dated "news". Nonetheless, watch for video of Keith's brilliant delivery to appear at MM within 24 hours at the latest.
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 48th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
Host: Keith Olbermann
LIBBY TESTIFIED THAT PRES. BUSH AUTHORIZED LEAK OF CLASSIFIED INFO: John Dean, fmr. White House counsel and author of "Worse than Watergate"
HOW CRUCIAL IS IT NOW FOR THE G.O.P. TO RETAIN CONTROL OF THE HOUSE?: Michael Duffy, TIME assistant managing editor
No wonder Keith Olbermann has been, from time to time, found cowering under his desk. Because I am a glutton for punishment, I watched the Olbermann Q&A interview on C-SPAN.org earlier today. What really struck me is how conflicted KO really is and how this might help explain his sometimes irrational behavior. He's got a lot of great advice for people...too bad he never applies it to himself.
IGNORE CRITICISM FROM THOSE WITH SMALLER AUDIENCES THAN YOU
What Keith Says...
"When I attack Bill O'Reilly or criticize him for something that he said on the air...if I punch upwards at FOX News, the clever response, the cynical and brilliant response is to just ignore. Like, well, why do we have to worry, they have one-seventh of our audience? [but] they attack. Bill Oâ€™Reilly's agent calls the head of NBC week after week saying, you have got to get Olbermann to stop this, as if for some reason there are rules here...these are the people who have suspended the rules and they want the referee to step in protect them against my little pinky."
NOTE TO KEITH: I opted not to report the calls to Tribune Broadcasting...yet.
What Keith Does...
Olbermann response to Bob Kur on Howard Kurtz's profile of Olbermann in The Washington Post:
"Olbermann told Kurtz he had no problem with the story, but then said there was one thing he didn't like: the conservative Olbermann critic in the piece, Robert Cox and crew at Olbermann Watch, which he protested is 'a site created to mock me.'...He claimed that when a commenter went after Cox, Cox put up "information of a personal nature" up against him, so 'he's not a reliable observer of my work.'"
QUOTE PEOPLE ACCURATELY
What Keith Says...
Lloyd Grove, his assistant Katherine Thomson, and their employers at The New York Daily News...are guilty of taking quotes out of context in such an egregious manner -- and ignoring an extraordinary conflict of interest for Ms. Thomson -- that what they published wouldnâ€™t have gotten past the editor of my 4th Grade Class Newspaper.
What Keith Does...
What Keith claimed about Brit Hume: "Your runner-up [for 'Worst Person in the World'], Brit Hume. Another reason that the phrase Fox News Channel is just a brand name, not a description. Hume criticized as 'excessive' the TV coverage of Pat Robertson's call for the assassination of President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela because, he said, Robertson has 'no influence.' Probably why Fox has had Robertson on their network ten times in the last year."
What Brit Hume actually said: "Televangelist Pat Robertson's political influence may have been declining since he came in second in the Iowa Republican caucuses 17 years ago and he may have no clout with the Bush administration, but you wouldn't know that from watching CNN today. CNN covered his call for Hugo Chavez's assassination at length, undeterred by the fact that during the noon hour CNN's own analyst, Bill Schneider, said Robertson had little influence."
BE FAIR AND HONEST
What Keith Says...
I tried to be fair and honest and as accurate and as informed as possible, and allow my viewer to be the same way.
What Keith Does...
What Keith claimed about Bill O'Reilly: [he] "told his audience that on Election Night [Nov. 2nd, 2004], at this hour, nine times as many Americans were watching Fox News as were watching MSNBC. Actually, they had seven and a half million viewers at 8 Eastern last Tuesday, and we had 2.6. That wouldn't be nine times as many...that would be less than three times as many. Too bad Billy isn't as good with a calculator -- or a brain -- as he is with a loofah
What Bill O'Reilly said...
What Bill O'Reilly actually said: "Last night [Nov. 3rd, 2004], on the Fox News Channel, at 8 o'clock, the Factor time, nine times as many Americans watched us as MSNBC. Nine times."
NOTE: Cable News Ratings for Nov. 3rd, 2004 - The Factor: 5,400,000 viewers; Countdown: 596,000 viewers (a greater than 9:1 ratio)
DON'T OVER SIMPLIFY
What Keith Says...
"What he [Bill O'Reilly] does on the air, everything is a simplification. It goes back to what we were talking about earlier, about inspiring fear in people, both in terms of what the world is going to be like, and also what the rest of the media is like. And I donâ€™t hate him. Iâ€™m entertained, to some degree, by him. I wouldnâ€™t watch him with a gun pointed to my head because I - people watch and actually think theyâ€™re hearing the truth.
What Keith Does...
"There is a whole army of bloggers, radio hosts and TV people who have decided that any deviation from their political view is to be persecuted - and the "Olbermann Watch" and Bozell jokers are foremost among them."
STAND UP FOR YOUR PRINCIPLES
What Keith Says...
"On occasion you need to stand up and say, Iâ€™m not going to feel right about this if I do it, and Iâ€™m not going to feel right about it for the rest of my life. And itâ€™s violating my principles and I want to say something and I want to do something now. And itâ€™s going to put me at person risk"
What Keith Does...
I was prepared to do it [quit MSNBC over covering the Clinton Sex Scandal]. And I have always felt that I was, you know, two or three crises of conscience -- or consciousness, but you know, two or three moments away from saying, no, sorry, Iâ€™m out...[but I] said, all right, Keith, you have got eight months to go, they owe you $100,000 a month, you can shoot your mouth off to the magazines and the newspapers right now, feel really good about it for about 20 minutes, and they get to keep the money.
Or, you can keep the money, you get $100,000 a month until the end of the year, at which time you can spend the rest of your life shooting your mouth off about these people. Every day of my life I would have taken the option that allowed me to keep the money, every day of my life. Iâ€™m not that crazy, never have been, never will, and I would hope anybody given that situation would say, this is my point about moral force, seriously. You donâ€™t have to operate it immediately. You do not have to operate it in terms of destroying yourself or not taking advantage of the lotto ticket that has just been handed. You can keep that money, do something with it later on.
A reader sent me a copy of a letter he sent to Keith Olbermann and the Countdown staff. I'd like to share with all clear-thinking Olby Watch readers:
I think it's really regrettable that you end your broadcast with the line about this being "the blank day since the declaration of mission accomplished in Iraq."
It's cheap and it's inaccurate. No one ever declared "mission accomplished." That was posted on a banner on a battleship that was coming home from its tour in Iraq. The President declared "major combat operations" completed in Iraq.
You should reconsider ending an otherwise credible broadcast each day with this sour line. It ruins it and leaves me with a bad impression everyday. The impression being that you don't care about accuracy or fairness. That's not true, is it?
It makes me not want to watch your show anymore.
Lee from LA
Leading off Wednesday's Hour of Spin: the arrest of the Homeland Security child porn fan. Olby blithely referred to "sexual predators who happen to be on the Department of Homeland Security payroll". Hey, no trial necessary when you appear in Judge Olbermann's Kangaroo Court. He went on to note:
Ironically, the arrest coming only hours after dramatic hearings on Capitol Hill about internet predatetters.
KO's interview guest was Spencer Hsu of the Washington Post. His detail and background on the story was relatively factual and spin-free, even when the infamous, deplorable Olbermann tried to egg him on:
Would they have been, the whole department been on any kind of heightened awareness relative to, uh, to sex crimes, after the case in Florida last October?
Hsu told Krazy Keith that there are 180,000 people in Homeland Security, and reminded him that these are only allegations--a savvy move, given that Hsu obviously heard Olby's "guilty until proven innocent" setup piece. Keith moved on to Tom DeLay, using a quote from DeLay's Sunday interview to justify flogging the story for yet another day. Of course, who else to "analyze" this non-news but the giggling pundit, Craig Crawford? Olbermann's Brain, sounding more than ever like a cross between Pat Robertson and Floyd the Barber, chortled his way through some astonishing Breaking News:
I've long thought, Keith, the federal investigation here, and these indictments, loomed very large forrrrr Congressman DeLay, and probably more so than the state case where he's already been indicted.
But Olby wasn't satisfied with the way things were going. When is someone going to implicate Bush? How does he keep getting away with stealing elections and corrupting our precious bodily fluids? Or, as KO put it in one of his trademark run-on questions:
We mentioned, uh, uh, the Buckham prospect perhaps obviously dragging prosecutors closer and pr-prossibly, uh, prosecution closer to DeLay, but has, at the same time, the whole scandal been dragged away from the President, we only, we saw this in Enron, it did not basically touch him, Plamegate has largely veered off course like an errant hurricane, is this now happening in the Abramoff case?
Keith went on to speculate whether the DeLay issue could be used against the GOP even after he's gone; Brain said "there are a lot of other characters out there to focus on". After the break, the #4 story dealt with the Cynthia McKinney prosecution, and NBC's Mike Viquieria updated the latest developments. He didn't get off to a good start however:
Good evening, Chris. Ken! KEITH!
Olby made reference to racism by a "conservative commentator" regarding McKinney's hairstyle (a backwards reference to his Media Matters Minute of last Friday), but Viquieria thought the hairdo could well have made it more difficult to identify her. After more oddball stupidity, the #3 story focused on the perky Katie Couric, with a generous sampling of rerun clips from her Today announcement. Bill Goodykoontz of the Arizona Republic, a tv critic who declared the fake news of Jon Stewart better than the real thing, was the designated interviewee. Before the next commercial break began KO could be heard mentioning that he won two Edward R Murrow awards. Again.
The #2 story answered the question on everyone's lips, or at least Krazy Keith's: Could Sesame Street screw up your baby? The lowdown on this burning issue came via a regurgitated NBC tape. Olby cheered up visibly when turning to his nightly celebrity segment, because he had more breaking Tom Cruise news! It's so heartwarming to see Keith smile, instead of griping on the radio that Olbermann Watch actually mocks him. Because Krazy Keith never mocks anybody. Olby can dish it out, but he can't take it. Perhaps we'll find him back in a fetal position under his desk, an inspiration to sissies everywhere.
Wrapping the hour was liberal comic and Simpsons voice-over artist Harry Shearer to promote the upcoming Simpsons movie--upcoming in July of 2007. Keith was hyped:
Swearing? Will there be swearing?
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 47th Day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
The ever-vigilant Tim Graham at Newsbusters.org reports that Keith Olbermann appeared on Bob Kur's radio show on WTWP (Washington, DC) with Howard Kurtz and took the opportunity to launch a viscious and unwarranted attack on OlbermannWatch and, in particular, yours truly. Upon learning that Keith doesn't like me, I sobbed uncontrollably for a good part of the day and was largely unconsolable.
Graham reports that when Kur, formerly of NBC News, asked KO about Kurtz's Monday Olbermann profile...
Olbermann told Kurtz he had no problem with the story, but then said there was one thing he didn't like: the conservative Olbermann critic in the piece, Robert Cox and crew at Olbermann Watch, which he protested is "a site created to mock me."...He claimed that when a commenter went after Cox, Cox put up "information of a personal nature" up against him, so "he's not a reliable observer of my work."
Let me see if have this right. Keith gets this wonderful PR boost courtesy of Kurtz column which includes not only the print version going out to three-quarters of a million readers but also a companion version in Kurtz psuedo-blog, Media Notes on washingtonpost.com plus a joint appearance with Kurtz on WaPo's new DC radio station and multiple mentions during Kurtz' weekly online chat session and all he can think to do is to go on WaPo radio to slam Kurtz for citing ONE critic in the entire piece? Talk about gratitude! No wonder Keith has developed so many "strong friendships" with former co-workers and colleagues!
It is easy to understand Keith's indignation. After all, according to Keith, we here at OlbermannWatch have engaged in "MOCKERY", the lowest, foulest form of criticism known to man. A sense of humor so debauched that Keith "Falafel Factor" Olbermann shudders to even mention the word. In fact, he might even crown me "Worst Person in the World" - if Barbara Bush is on vacation this week!
Apparently Keith is also prepared to open a can of worms he is going to regret opening with regard to a certain TV news producer and the loony lefty who tried to "blackmail" me into shutting down OlbermannWatch.
Note to KO: "Unreliable observer"? "Information of a personal nature"?
Keith, you REALLY want to go there? Fine.
In poking around at the sites linking to OlbermannWatch, I realized that the there are TWO versions of the WaPo Olby profile with two very different headlines: The Anti-Bush Anchor and A Gadfly With Buzz. Interesting.
The Kurtz article (both versions) got me motivated to do a little clean up on the site and poke around a bit.
I see that Tracy over at The Ka-nitting Factory discovered the joys of OlbermannWatch yesterday:
I found this really retarded site this morning called Olbermannwatch, which claims to keep its ever watchful eye on...Keith Olbermann. I can only imagine how f***ing hilarious Keith himself might find such a site.
Clear-thinking readers of OlbermannWatch will have to excuse Tracy her language. As a dyed-in-the-wool libnut she is unable to express herself without resorting to profanity or insulting the mentally-challenged.
I noticed two "new" Keith Lover sites for the first time today and have informed them that they have been granted the privilege of being added to the blogroll at OlbermannWatch. The first site is Drinking with Keith Olbermann which I am awarding the first-ever OlbermannWatch przie for "Best Keith Olbermann Blog Name". The second is a site I thought at first must be an anti-Keith site called "Relevant Torture". I know for many OlbermannWatch readers, watching Countdown is akin to torture. Turns out the site is called Either Relevant Or True but uses "relevantortrue.blogspot.com" as the domain. It is a pro-Keith site.
I also saw that we were once again named the #1 Keith Olbermann blog on the web, a fact which I am promoting at the top of the home page. This is the third year running and a real honor. Thanks to all you loyal OlbermannWatch readers - we couldn't have done it with you!
C-SPAN announced today they are dropping prices on its unwatchable "Q&A with Keith Olbermann" video. Prices have been cut from $29.95 to $19.95.
The govertment affairs cable network has been stuck for weeks with a warehouse full of Keith Olbermann DVDs and VHS tapes. Our inside sources say KO fans will be best advised to wait for the summer clearance when the DVDs will be sold as drink coasters - $1.99 for a case of 24.
Given the scintillating topics covered, it's hard to understand why the videos are not sellling:
In an interview about television journalism, Mr. Olbermann talked about his childhood, his early love for broadcasting, his principles, specific shows he has hosted, and networks where he worked, including FOX and MSNBC. He emphasized the role of ratings in broadcasting and cable television, and talked about the ratings effects of the Monica Lewinsky scandal and the death of Princess Diana. He also talked about his health problems.
Gee, why is it no surprise that C-Span reports "Customers who bought this product also purchased..."
"25th Anniversary of Reagan Assassination Attempt"
Ah, the good old days for the loony left.
It's no surprise that the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann led off the backwards newshour with the Tom DeLay story. Neither is it any surprise that he claimed Delay was:
faced with losing his race for reelection to Congress
Note: DeLay wasn't facing a possible loss, a close race, or a nail-biter. No, he was facing an out-and-out loss. Apparently, on those weekends when he isn't rummaging through dusty ballot boxes in Ohio, Olby is down in Texas counting votes that haven't even been cast yet. KO also gratuitously repeated the official MSNBC line that Chris Matthews broke this story. That's the version Matthews likes too, since it pretends that Time Magazine online story never existed.
Here's a unique, innovative, outside-the-box idea: let's get Dana Milbank to "analyze" all this. When that turned out to be predictable and boring, Olby switched to "possible" West Wing personnel changes. Ah, speculation and gossip. So much more interesting than news. KO took the opportunity to humbly mention that Milbank's paper called Countdown "insightful" (a term that does not appear in Howard Kurtz's article).
The spin just wasn't vertiginous enough with Dana; ever since his paper slapped him down he really just hasn't delivered for Krazy Keith. So Milbank gets hustled off stage, and in comes Wayne Slater, of "Bush's Brain" fame. Asked how strong the legal case is against DeLay, Slater delivers a vague answer. But note his verbiage:
The whole process of sending money up to Washington, laundering it through, and sending money back to Texas in an illegal fashion...
See? It's money "laundering"--no need even to use the weasel word "alleged". And why bother having the trial? It's "illegal". Judge Slater has ruled. That's the kind of guest who's made to order for The Hour of Spin.
The story slopped over into the #4 slot, where Olby was required to call in MSNBC's ex-Republican pundit Pat Buchanan, author of "Where the Right Went Wrong". PB thought there could be a downside for Democrats, who have lost a convenient bogeyman. KO had a different spin on it: with DeLay gone, all that criticism will focus on the President and...Scooter Libby! Right. Libby's name will be on everybody's lips. Pat started talking about tax cuts and judges, but Olby quickly got him derailed onto Iraq, where he and KO have some common ground. Still, even 30 seconds of non-Olbermann-approved opinion sneaking into an episode of Countdown is worth noting, since that happens about as often as a visit from the Kohoutek Comet.
Counting down the rest of the show: oddball, Barry Bonds, baseball, internet porn (regurgitated from NBC), celebrities, and a movie about snakes on a plane. Weren't there mass demonstrations in Paris today? Sorry, no time. Immigration, new charges against Saddam? Couldn't squeeze them in.
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 46th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
In a column entitled The Anti-Bush Anchor Howard Kurtz of The Washington Post quotes Keith saying:
"I find myself currently aligned, not in the sense of having membership, but being in the same part of the ballpark as a lot of liberals," says the host of MSNBC's "Countdown."
"While his main guests are journalists, he sometimes interviews Democratic lawmakers but almost never brings on Republicans or conservatives, except for MSNBC contributor Pat Buchanan. "There are not a lot of conservative guests who are happy to be on the show," Olbermann admits."
MSNBC President Rick Kaplan, apparently drunk, calls Countdown the "best show on television".
"In the same way that people who think the president needs to be supported more have turned to Fox, a lot of people who think the president needs to be taken on more have found a friendly voice in 'Countdown.'
At least Kaplan has defined the purpose of the show - taking down President Bush. Interesting because unlike O'Reilly Factor, which is presented as news analysis (i.e., Bill O'Reilly's opinion on the news), Olbermann is billed as a "news anchor" and Countdown as "news programming".
Fortunately for clear-thinking readers everywhere, Kurtz cites the foremost authority on Keith Olbermann - OlbermannWatch:
Liberal bloggers have been praising Olbermann, but one online critic, Robert Cox, recently launched a new site, Olbermann Watch, where a contributor said: "Hello! Earth to Krazy Keith! When was the last time anybody who disagreed with your spin was permitted to sit for an interview with your almightyness?"
NOTE TO HOWARD: Long-time readers know we have been up and running since 2004 but thanks for the plug none-the-less.
UPDATE: John Amato at Crooks and Liars is a little less forgiving of Howard for calling OW a "new" site.
UPDATE h/t to commenter OW Plagarism...I edited the post to fix the quotations.
Last Friday, the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann took his best shot. Bill O'Reilly was off, and the less-charismatic Tony Snow was subbing. But it was another swing and a miss for Krazy Keith, his ratings swamped by not-O'Reilly's by nearly four to one. Now it's a new week, and a new chance for Olby: Mr Bill is off again (John Kasich substituting) and KO has another turn at bat. Will tonight be the night that Keith finally proves he can attract more viewers than a substitute O'Reilly host? Or will he have to wait for FNC to put up a test pattern at 8:00 pm and hope for the best?
On Monday night's Countdown, the lead story was rumor, speculation, and innuendo. Will John Snow depart? Is Scott McClellan about to resign? And what about Donald Rumsfeld? General Zinni thinks he should go, and since he said it on an NBC program, it's that much more momentous. Richard Wolffe of Newsweek chewed over all this hearsay and gossip (with KO indulging in a little wish-fulfillment fantasizing, tossing in Karl Rove for good measure), and we wondered, when did conjecture become the most important news of the day? When it can be spun as a negative against "Mister" Bush, of course!
Olby went on to Zarqawi, then Jill Carroll's return (via a taped NBC report). The #4 slot featured another taped NBC report on tornadoes, followed by oddball, which included video of a "chasing tail" festival. #3 was the recurrently hyped segment about the new 9/11 movie, United 93. Repeatedly suggesting that it's "too soon", KO ran the trailer for the film and interviewed (Democrat) film critic Jeffrey Lyons, who also found the timing "troubling". Of course. Any release date earlier than November 7, 2006 is going to be "too soon".
Next the Moussaoui verdict was summarily outlined, without the smart-alecky triumphalism Olby employed back when he was chortling that the prosecutor blew the case. One would think there would be at least the merest modicum of embarrassment on KO's part for his twisted, slanted reportage of this matter, but with the wig, the pancake makeup, and the Man-Tan, even if he had the self-respect to blush, who could see it?
Chris Farley, celebrity news (incorporating the nightly Barry Bonds bash), and another exciting Tom Cruise segment rounded out the hour. And yes, that "top newsmaker", the creepy Michael Musto, was the guest. Rep Jean Schmidt (R) was a "worse" person--something about credits for a college degree.
Tonight's dogs that did not bark? For one, Cynthia McKinney (D), who spent $1,000 of taxpayers' money (earmarked for office supplies) flying Isaac Hayes around. And then there's that email from an ABC producer; you will recall the leak was denounced by Olby as a White House trick. For some reason, Keith hasn't bothered to admit his error: it was a former ABC employee who leaked the email, not the eeevil Karl Rove. Corrections? Krazy Keith don't need no stinkin' corrections.
And that's The Hour of Spin for this, the 45th day of the Keith Olbermann CoverUp.
For Olby, it was fun while it lasted. With the Winter Olympics as lead-in programming, he found himself the beneficiary of a slight upturn in viewers. But now, as Olympic memories start to fade and viewer habits return to normal, his ratings have started to regress from merely awful back to abominable. So in an effort to rehabilitate the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann, his bosses at MSNBC have begun the Olby Publicity Tour.
Inside Cable News points out that the network suits have devised a new ad for The Hour of Spin, and--just like the program itself--it doesn't constrain itself with such archaic concepts as truth or accuracy:
O'Reilly was talking about Total Viewers and not Demo viewers. In essence the ad dings O'Reilly for something he never said. I've tried not to take sides in this saga but in this particular case O'Reilly is not guilty of the charge against him.
Criticizing O'Reilly for something he never said? This is so reminiscent of Countdown that we wonder if Olby himself wrote the script.
Even more dangerous than running dishonest promos, A-Mess-NBC has actually unleashed Krazy Keith himself for interviews with newspapers. The latest one appears in today's Washington Post, where Howard Kurtz wraps the story with a reference to a website that has been somewhat critical of our Olby:
Liberal bloggers have been praising Olbermann, but one online critic, Robert Cox, recently launched a new site, Olbermann Watch, where a contributor said: "Hello! Earth to Krazy Keith! When was the last time anybody who disagreed with your spin was permitted to sit for an interview with your almightyness?"
For the record, Olbermann Watch has been around since November, 2004. And while it was nice of Mr Kurtz to quote one of our comments, it would have made more sense if he had included the context: Keith rails about the President surrounding himself with people who agree with him, but constructs his own "news" show inside an ideological bubble that outlaws dissent.
To expand on this point, we turn to The Cable Game. Always a good read, TCG has picked up on an OlbyInterview with a San Bernadino paper, and focused like a laser beam on the salient quotes:
The idea that 'balance' is always fair is absolutely false.
A key admission: Olby is not interested in balance.
If I say there's an 800-pound elephant or 800-pound donkey, depending on your politics, in the room, and someone else says, 'No, there isn't,' one person can be right and one can be objectively wrong.
There are so many logical fallacies in this one sentence that we won't even begin to analyze them all. Suffice it to say that physical facts are almost always provable. It would be silly to argue the question of whether the Earth is flat. The issues that demand balance are those of philosophy, ideology, principles, and morality. These are not so easily dismissed as "objectively right" or "objectively wrong", but Olbermann knows that. He deliberately chooses an outrageous, irrelevant example that sidesteps the pivotal failing of his "news" show: it is fabricated from top to bottom to fit his own "objectively right" mindset
Having both sides politically debating a point adds nothing to the political discourse; plus, it makes me queasy.
Here is the most startling admission of them all. Keith Olbermann is so fearful that anyone might question what he has ruled to be Absolute Truth, that he won't even allow such heretical thoughts to be expressed in his presence. Just the notion that someone might not parrot his spin turns him physically ill and nauseous.
Is this the real reason for his hatred of Bill O'Reilly? Mr Bill presents all sides, from Code Pink to Ann Coulter; the audience can decide who is correct. Krazy Keith compensates for insecurity by adopting a too-hip-for-my-shirt smart-aleck shtick, while cowering at the thought that anything might creep into The Hour of Spin that would require him to justify his own preconceived biases. Fear and envy--a marriage of convenience that is the soul of Keith Olbermann.