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"COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00 P.M.-9:00 P.M. ET)
Host: Keith Olbermann
After yesterday's Countdown JonBenetapalooza, we noted that Dan Abrams would be studying the Nielsens very closely. The results are in, and there's good news, and bad news.
The good news is that The Hour of Spin got a bump thanks to their ratings ploy of devoting two-thirds of the program to JonBenet. The bad news is that so did everyone else. In fact, Wednesday found the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann finishing in fourth, behind O'Reilly, Zahn, and even Nancy Grace. But there's a silver lining: in the "key demo", Olby still finished fourth, but it was a closer fourth.
As we write the opening spiel is underway (NSA decision and JonBenet featured), and it occurs to us that at some point Olby is bound to refer to the NSA ruling as "stunning". (This is probably the safest bet other than that he'll say "great thanks", but we'll see.) But which story will get the coveted lead spot? Will Dan Abrams prevail and make JonBenet the top news item? Or will Keith "I answer to no one" Olbermann win the battle of wills and insist that Bush-bashing comes first?
Score one for the guy from "middle-management". Though Olby snuck in a reference to the "stunning" ruling [Ding!], the lead story was all JonBenet. And we must admit, we were fascinated by Olbermann's, shall we say, unique take on the case:
Tonight, the nexus between politics and crime. Just one day, less than 24 hours, before a key decision damaging to the Bush administration is announced, a high-profile cold case is suddenly broken open with a well-publicized arrest. Who knew this decision was coming? Why was the arrest made just in time to blunt the impact of this remarkable decision? There is reason to believe tonight that the FBI, consulting on the JonBenet case, was well aware, and may even have played a role in demanding a hasty, premature arrest of the suspect. The FBI, an organization that answers directly to Mr Bush. And the suspect: a real suspect, or a hapless wannabee, who was not a flight risk, a man they never even questioned? No DNA evidence; no proof he was even in Boulder when the crime was committed. Yet someone wanted him arrested Monday, one day before a courageous federal judge handed down an extraordinary decision, all just in time to bury the bad news for Mister Bush and his administration.
OK, we made that up. Suffice to say JonBenet occupied the entire first block. In the #4 segment, it was the NSA decision, wherein Krazy Keith again claimed the Bush administration was "politicizing" the decision. (Washington must be a funny place on OlbyPlanet: nobody politicizes but Republicans.) For an impartial analysis of the opinion, KO naturally called on someone who had already argued against the program: Jonathan Turley. Time to update The List ("experts" interviewed on Countdown on the NSA program):
Fair and balanced as always. Turley quickly accused Bush of committing "a federal crime". We almost spit up our Diet Coke when the Perfessor described the opinion as "very thoughtful" (yeah, like how it completely fudged the issue of standing?). Olby sarcastically asked if the country ever "went out of business" because a President didn't get his way on national security. A better question would have been if any President has ever had a court tell him he needed permission to intercept enemy communications during wartime. Nobody mentioned the consensus of legal opinion that the decision will be reversed on appeal. Hell, if that happens, we'll be lucky if Olby even reports it!
After oddball, the #3 story was about newly released 9/11 tapes, handled by a regurgitated NBC report. From there it was on to a "comedy" video on the planets (astronomer interview followed), Barry Bonds, Mel Gibson, Bruno Kirby, and a feature interview with Samuel L Jackson about his new movie.
Bill O'Reilly is "worst person", for pointing out (as we did) that "his competition" (i.e. Infamous Deplorable himself) did 40 minutes on the story. KO said Bill told his radio audience this "last night" (Bill's radio show comes on at noon). What's so worst persony about that? Well, bellowed Keith, O'Reilly did 45 minutes on the story tonight. So there! Yes, the ever-popular tu quoque fallacy. So does that mean tomorrow Keith Olbermann will be "worst person in the world" for saying the same thing Bill O'Reilly said?
Dogs that did not bark include Zawahiri: new reports of his involvement in the supposed, purported, alleged terror plot that Olbermann has been insisting have no connection to Al Qaeda. No wonder that dog was silenced. And it's day four and the discredited Keith Olbermann has yet to report on the kidnapped Fox journalists. He hasn't even had the shred of decency to offer a word of hope for their release. But "decency" and "Olbermann" don't even belong in the same sentence.