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"COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00 P.M.-9:00 P.M. ET)
Host: Keith Olbermann
When Keith began his carnival barker patter to kick off The Hour of Spin, he bellowed about "the old switcheroo", adding:
The National Intelligence Estimate, the President so reluctantly released, the one that says the War in Iraq increased the terror threat, the one for which he is getting pounded, may not be the latest National Intelligence Estimate. Rep Harman says there's a newer one, and the White House is deliberately keeping it under wraps.
Seriously, is Olby off his meds? The NIE is classified. A "newer one" that doesn't even exist yet would also be classified. And Herr Olbermann thinks that keeping classified intelligence "under wraps" is a screaming headline?
The spiel also promised a "special investigation" proving Condi Rice is [think John McLaughlin's voice here] WRONG, and, as a special bonus, an attack on the New York Post.
Launching into the NIE story, KO interestingly read, for the first time, that portion of the NIE that Olbermann Watch specifically upbraided him for not reading yesterday. Another victory for the clear thinkers. Then clips from Schumer (D) and Boehner (R). What's this? He actually ran a balanced set of clips? This must be some sort of Olbermannian trick. Something's coming.
Olby said the "new" NIE is "allegedly only a draft". Then a clip from Harman (D), who wants the "draft" released now, so selected portions can be leaked before the election. Well, she didn't say that last part. Clip of Tony Snow about why the "draft" isn't ready to be released. The House passed a bill regarding detainees, with nonpartisan Keith adding:
A victory at what cost remains to be seen.
"Monkey" Olbermann cited unnamed "international legal scholars" for the proposition that the bill violates the Geneva Conventions. All of this was just a warm-up for Olby's "special investigation" on why Bush let 9/11 happen. The rhetoric was thick and ripe:
Comparing the two Presidents is valid, necessary, to illuminate the capacities of the office.
The latest Olbermann theory is that, while the notion that Clinton had a chance to get UBL is myth, in fact it was "Mister" Bush who offered UBL and declined to take him:
Our goal in this report is to rise to Mr Clinton's challenge and assess the record of Mr Bush's efforts in Al Qaeda in his first eight months in office.
There followed a recitation of events straight out of the Clarke handbook. Krazy Keith amplified it with claims by Bill Jefferson Clinton and admitted liar Sandy Berger, reporting as if these were proven historical facts. A fuzzy clip of Berger referred to the situation as "nothing less than a war". Curious, given that for months Olby has been telling us the threat was exaggerated and the war on terror "so-called". Maybe one of the clear-headed Olbermann Watch readers can identify what website KO lifted this from.
Regarding the USS Cole, KO complained that "Mister" Bush did not take military action even when it was established that Al Qaeda was responsible. Heroic far-seeing Democrats warned that focusing on missile defense was "misplaced" [clip of Levin (D)]. The August 6th PDB gets another plug, even though the intelligence it contained was not exactly fresh. Clips of Condi and Cheney et al talking about they didn't anticipate this kind of a hit. Prescient Diane Feinstein (D) wants to press for more counter-terrorism measures.
This was worse than watching paint dry. It was like sitting in a too-small classroom desk, listening to a stuffy, boring professor reading a press release from a left-wing propaganda site. We don't want to say that it was painful, but it felt like an hour in a dentist's chair. And worst of all, when it was over, it wasn't over. The break served only as a brief respite until the Clarke propagandist was given the floor.
The infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann was very careful to limit the questions to only Bush's eight months, all the better to keep Clarke's doppelganger from expressing any of his frustrations with the previous inhabitant of the White House. Kurtz said the Bush administration wasn't "sitting on its hands", but was playing defensively. They didn't take an immediate liking to Clarke's strategy. Anything that happened was just "residual momentum" from the Clinton years. It was a "bureaucratic issue", said Kurtz.
Olby spun a long tale about this didn't happen until then, so that proves they didn't care about terrorism, yada yada yada. Kurtz mentioned the transition, security clearances, and such, flatly stating that KO's assertion was "an unfair inference". He could have added other things that prevented getting things fully up to speed, like challenges to the electoral vote, Congressional stalling in confirming appointees, etc.
Kurtz was even less accomodating to Herr Olbermann's bizarre theory that the Taliban offered Bin Laden to Bush, a theory KO concocted from one reporter's question at a press conference. Olby's guest dismissed it as so much "noise", like the reports of UBL's death. But he came back again to how they just didn't take Clarke's word for everything and they had to stand in line behind others whose business had greater priority. KO brought up missile defense, asking Kurtz:
Does your blood run cold?
His reply was that we focused on the wrong problem. Interestingly, Kurtz didn't get Great Thanksed from Keith. Just a "thank you for your time". (Take that for not parroting every word of OlbySpin!) As this mind-numbing exercise groaned to its conclusion, we thought back to the promo that had been running all day: Bush's chances to stop Bin Laden before 9/11. The only one we heard was the "offer" from the Taliban that Olby's own expert ridiculed. But don't expect the fact that a Krazy Keith theory is given no credibility by someone in the know will stop KO and the Olbypologists from flaunting it anyhow. It hasn't in the past. Just watch.
Oddball preceded another episode of Attack the Media. It was time to slam the "Rupert Murdoch owned" New York Post. This was all about the scare that was reported today, and the "shocking" way the paper wrote it up. KO gave a self-aggrandizing version of the events, disputing the paper's claim that he insisted a check-up at the hospital. He asserts it was all the doing of the police officers, and he wanted to leave the hospital but they wouldn't let him. Then, in a classic bit of OlbySpin, he slammed the Post for:
...its endorsement of terroristic threats from the radical right.
So KO knows who sent him the suspicious package? He knows it came from the "radical right"? Why doesn't he have the guy arrested? In the Anthrax attacks, despite messages that appeared to emanate from radical Islamists, investigators have been looking elsewhere, because it is not uncommon for such messages to be red herrings. But Swami Olbermann Knows All and Sees All. Maybe he should name the sender as "worst person".
Then Keith "Man on Fan" Olbermann was off on another tear. The paper sides with terrorists, not the FBI. No newspaper should have printed this, despite Murdoch's "radical agenda". Mr Humility wrapped this unbilled "special comment" with:
At this end anyway we are still human beings and Americans. And we would never have any problem choosing whether to support the terrorists or the FBI.
Yeah, Olby always supports law enforcement over the terrorists (NSA surveillance, Patriot Act, sneering at "purported" plots...). Gag. Moving along: Terrell Owens, Anna Nicole Smith, Steve Irwin. #1: The sex tapes of D-list celebrities.
More maniacal pimping of
Keith's book the book that bears Keith's name introduced the Media Matters Minute. Let's see who gets named in tonight's "nonpartisan" segment and whether all the necessary slots (Republican, conservative, Fox News) get filled. Runner-up: a candidate for Congress (R). Runner-up: Michael Savage. "Worst person" Roger Ailes, coupled with a criticism from Olby of his weight. Yes, this from the "anchorman" whose desk creeps a little higher every month, and whose cameraman keeps those shots tighter and tighter so as not to show his gut. Roger's crime was defending Chris Wallace, but KO found a way to make another reference (the third) to the "terroristic threats" that he has been receiving. Hey, this is even better than being on an Al Qaeda hit list! (Yup, all three slots filled.)
Maybe Olby thinks trumpeting his victimhood will help get those book sales back into shape. If so, he has a lot of work to do. Amazon shows him sinking again, at #69 as we write. And what of his bete-noir? Bill O'Reilly's "Culture Warrior" is currently ranked at #4. Oh, the humanity! How can this be? Keith "I'm not courting the liberals" Olbermann is running ads on Daily Kos, Talking Points Memo, and Crooks & Liars, the bluest blogs on the planet. What's more, the one-day Nielsen blip from his un-American smear of Chris Wallace has already started to dissipate. Tuesday's numbers show "Monkey" Olbermann slipping back into third place. And don't think he's on the way up. Next in store: #4. Looks like his writer is going to have to crank out another SC to keep Keith from ending up in the basement again. Tonight's MisterMeter reading: 11 [DANGER!].
Free Market News Network: Was MSNBC's newsman Keith Olbermann's recent "anthrax scare" a warning? Rob Kall, posting at OpEd News, explores this question, as well as the furor raised by a New York Post story that purported to belittle Olbermann for his reaction to the whole incident.
Jossip: Keith Olbermann took the opportunity on Countdown yesterday to express the severity of the envelope full of soap he received. He didn't get a lollipop on his way out, ok guys? This was really, really serious. He got a prescription for Cippro. There was also a federal investigation into the incident, which the FBI asked Olbermann not to report on. For your protection, obviously. We can't have the person who's mass mailing soap to everyone know that the FBI is on to him.
Metroblogging New York City: The calm, yet assertive Olbermann retorts on his show here and wins and even larger place in my heart. Worth watching regardless of your political leanings, as I think we can all agree that the Post is a worthless rag.
ICN: Keith Olbermann responded yesterday to yesterdayâ€™s Page Six item on him and deservedly shredded the New York Post for their antics.
Question Everything: The fact that the NY Post may have interfered with a federal investigation is not the most disturbing part. Even worse is the tone in which they reported it.
Crooks and Liars: There is a very serious side to what happened.
fbi hop: Given the condescending tone by the New York Post Page Six staff and the fact that no other media outlet reported directly on the event, I thought that maybe Page Six was making things up.
Done with Mirrors: ...while Page 6's stupid, ill-considered and pettily gleeful little piece inspired this post, I don't want to let the actual instigator off the hook...
ICN: ...trying to compare Roger Ailesâ€™ comment to what happened to him leaves me nonplussed. The two are not related.
ICN: As these insults pile up, Olbermann risks becoming the very thing he apparently despises most about FNC (judging by his previous comments); a loudmouth talking head who takes the low road with the cheap shot instead of making substantive points. Is that really what he wants to be?
Blue Herald: Olbermann smacks Roger Ailes good.
Newsbusters: I actually was surprised when on tonight's show, Keith Olbermann unleashed a string of jibes aimed at Roger Ailes' physique. So surprised that when Olbermann first began his barrage, with a comment about Ailes doing something "between pies," I truly wondered whether I had misheard him or perhaps misunderstood his intent. Fat jokes? Could my fellow Cornellian really be stooping that low?
Hot Air: Olbermann calls Ailes fat eight times in seven minutes; Update: The 18-second gap
Newsbusters Olbermann Insults Ailes Again