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When Keith Olbermann delivered his Special Comment on Wednesday of last week, there was a firestorm of reaction. On this site we documented the objections of Dennis Prager, Mark Levin, and Laura Ingraham. Since Keith reads this site religiously, he was well aware of the strong responses from Dr Levin and Ms Ingraham in particular. Tonight he sought to dismiss those responses with an explanation, and an attack on Ingraham and Levin claiming that they "hate the troops". But there's a problem, and it goes straight to the honesty and credibility of Edward R Olbermann.
Monday night, as he bellowed his "postscript" to last week's Special Education Komment, Olby sought to redefine the meaning of his phrase "cold-blooded killers" created by "Mister" Bush. Now, he says he was not talking of the troops. Revealing a previously deleted line of text, KO claimed he was really speaking of Bush, his Cabinet, and the Pentagon:
No writer or broadcaster is ever as precise and clear as he thinks he is. Television goes by quickly, and the viewer is not provided a copy of the script. So it is possible that reasonable viewers might have been confused by exactly to whom I referred. Especially considering that I edited the original line, which was:"Mister" Bush, at long last has it not dawned on you that the America you have now created includes cold-blooded killers who will kill people to achieve their political objectives? They are called your Cabinet and your Pentagon.During the editing process it seemed that was a little broad. That there appear to be men in both of those places--Gen Ricardo Sanchez, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, perhaps even the new Secretary of Defense Richard Gates--who did not merit inclusion in that list. My use of "Mister" Bush's phrase "cold-blooded killers" did not refer to US troops.
Now one might question this ex post facto revelation, especially since we know that the Pentagon is largely staffed by...US troops! They command the soldiers in the field who, under Oralmann's construction, would then become the moral equivalent of contract killers.
But our point here is not the weakness of Keith's freshly minted rationalization. Our point is how suspicious this new-found "Director's Cut" really is. In a 13-minute diatribe, he didn't have time for a sentence or two so he had to leave it out? He couldn't have given the explanation he gave tonight, which in pertinent part took only a matter of seconds?
Of course this assumes that he did edit it out. That we believe his latest version of this yarn. Because one thing is certain: it doesn't comport with what he was saying about it just days ago. One of Olbermoronn's practices is to pimp his own program on his blog of choice, the Daily Kos. And true to form, he did so for Wednesday's Special Comment edition. After it aired, Keith was basking in the adoration of the Kossacks, and when one of them offered up the view that his polemic might have been just a tad long-winded, this is what Keith Olbermann said, in his own words:
Funny thing about these. When I first write 'em, they are half as long. Then I'm reminded of other things this administration has done, and suddenly, they're twice as long. Actually, this one was one straight write. Took about an hour, I moved one sentence, added the new info on the fraudulence of the golf claim, and altered about a half dozen adjectives, and that was it. Not exactly Mozart's unblemished composition sheets, but I'll take it.
How curious. How odd. Before the blistering criticisms from Laura Ingraham and Mark Levin, this Special Comment just flowed from his fingers. He didn't need to edit or abridge it in any way, just a few touch-ups: a sentence moved, new info added, and a few adjectives changed. That was it! Nothing whatsoever about removing a sentence, or a phrase, or anything, let alone words that just happened to define the signature phrase around which his harangue was written. And yet, after the barrage of criticisms, all of a sudden he remembers a sentence or two that he left out.
Obviously, both stories cannot be true. So we ask again: Was Olbermann lying then, or is he lying now?