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"COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN" (8:00 P.M.-9:00 P.M. ET)
Host: Keith Olbermann
The opening spiel took a predictable shot at Bush, then on to "restoring" habeas corpus, a possible rift between Cheney and "Mister" Bush, Ed Bradley, and Borat. Olby summed up today's political developments by characterizing the President's outreach:
Mister Bush does whatever he wants, for as long as he can get away with it.
After clips from "Mister" Bush, Ms Pelosi, and George Allen, Monkeymann welcomed Dana Milbank, sans showy suits. KO described Bush as trying to "ram through" proposals in the lame duck Congress, and Dana played along, saying it's not "bipartisan", it's "bipolar". Citizen Keith, ever mindful of Rule 1, suggested that Bush just threw himself "back into the briar patch" because he wants to resubmit Bolton to the Senate. Milbank says it was "symbolic" to throw something "the necons' way". Krazy Keith kept insisting that this was a bad move on "Mister" Bush's part (Rule 1 again), and Dana knew just what to say.
Then it was time for everyone's favorite sitcom, Olby and the Perfessor. Just as he did yesterday, the infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann lobbied for the repeal of the Military Commissions Act. Perfessor Turley was rapturous over the new Democrat majority, and praised divided government. (So that means he will support a GOP President in two years?) Then Krazy Keith came up with a classic bit of analysis that, even for him, ventured way, way out; this bit of partisanship went to 11:
Is there a damper effect just by the presence of Democrats in control of Congress, I mean, did somebody's odds of winding up, uh, unjustly, if there is a justly I don't know, but unjustly in Gitmo, uh just drop precipitously...?
Yes. If Democrats run Congress, judges immediately become smarter, juries are infallible, and even the coffee at Starbuck's tastes better. Can anyone take such drivel seriously? Apparently, yes. The Perfessor bought into it, and sung the praises of the new Democrat committee heads, while repeating another Olby talking point: signing statements. Claimed the Perfessor: he's going to "have to cut that stuff out". Really? How is it that B.J. Clinton didn't have to cut that stuff out when he had a Republican Congress?
The Perfessor went on to discuss all of Bush's "crimes", so he was naturally great thanksed, with KO adding gratuitously that he's "breathing easier tonight". Oh, please. Then it was on to the Rummy resignation, spun by Krazy Keith as symbolic of a rift with Cheney. Olby asked:
What does this mean for Dick Cheney and the neocons; did Mister Bush just give them the bum's rush?
Ah, those neocons. We're waiting for Herr Olbermann to slip and call them monkeys. Or maybe it won't be a slip. Anyhow, DeFrank didn't see it so much as a "bum's rush", but Olbermoronn wasn't to be denied, ranting about Bush lying, the neocons again, and isn't there really, honest now, tell the truth, a push to get rid of Cheney? DeFrank said nope, he doubts anyone is telling the President anything like that: "That's a non-starter". Sensing an opening for a cheap shot, KO said:
Just came to mind because it was, I think it was Spiro Agnew's birthday was Monday, that's why that popped into my head.
Oops. DeFrank didn't care for that, and shot back that Dick Cheney has never been accused of taking bribes, telling Krazy Keith that he can't equate Cheney with Agnew. Instead of launching into a Speshul Komment because someone dared to tell him "he can't equate" something, a flustered Olbermann stammered a quick excuse: Oh no, no sir, just a joke, heh heh, just a botched joke, heh heh.
KO introduced oddball by bragging about his Wednesday night ratings, without mentioning how badly he got creamed by his competitors. Excellent, excellent. Since he thinks ratings are important, we will continue to summarize them as his numbers skid on their inevitable post-election decline. The #3 segment was a victory lap for the editor of the Gannett military publications, who had called for Rumsfeld's removal. The pretext was to discuss the new Secretary of State, along with Olby again putting forward his notion that Cheney has been "lame ducked". It's telling that the discredited sports guy did not call on Thomas Ricks for this bit of analysis, but we know why that is.
#2: A remembrance of the late Ed Bradley, relegated to a rerun of an NBC report. We didn't even get the obligatory Keith inserting himself into the story personal reminiscence. Then Britney Spears, Kevin Federline, Daniel Baldwin, and Cruise News! #1: Borat. In the Media Matters Minute, attacks were made on Rush Limbaugh (conservative) and--surprise!--Bill O'Reilly (Fox, both slots dutifully filled). The latter's crime was something Mr Bill said about Iraq that was in no way unreasonable, but Krazy Keith's olbsession is so deep-rooted that he just doesn't care any more. Just do the segment, get it over, and be home in time for his babysitting duties.
Muted mongrels: Another day, another report free of any komplaints or konspiracies about voting machines, vote fraud, disenfranchisement, and all the other talking points Olbermoronn wore to death after the 2000 and 2004 elections. He has not reported on the election-day tricks in New Jersey, where Kean get-out-the-vote centers were found chained and padlocked by persons unknown. Isn't that vote suppression? Not on OlbyPlanet. There are also new developments in the ongoing investigation into what appears to be documented fraud in the 2006 election. Another story Edward R Olbermann has studiously ignored, because the perpetrators are not eeevil right-wing Republican crypto-fascist neocon swine.
Olbermann's book The book that bears Olbermann's name is #913 at amazon, while Mr Bill's "Culture Warrior" is at #14. At Barnes & Noble the OlbyTome declined to #2,871, and O'Reilly's book stands at #24. And Mr Bill's literary triumph sits in the #3 slot on the New York Times Best Sellers list. The day after a national election is always a big ratings night, and since a rising tide lifts all boats, Countdown benefitted. The Hour of Spin hit the million viewer mark, but as might be expected, everyone else had big numbers too, so it was another third place finish for poor Olby, both in total viewers, and in his critical, beloved, all-important, coveted "key demo". Tonight's MisterMeter reading: 14