On Tuesday’s Countdown show, at the beginning of a segment about the Obama family’s pet dog, MSNBC host Keith Olbermann and MSNBC political analyst Craig Crawford, joked about FNC host Bill O’Reilly being a dog. Picking up on Olbermann’s earlier suggestion that he gets tired of hearing about presidential dogs, Crawford opened the discussion by ribbing the Countdown host about the possibility of the show getting its own pet dog.
After Olbermann disagreed, Crawford came back with a lame joke: "Well, you’ve already got O’Reilly’s show.
Olbermann responded: "That would be a female dog."
The over-the-top name-calling against the FNC host came just minutes after Olbermann used his "Worst Person" segment to slam Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity as he lectured the conservative talk radio hosts that one does not have to "spend every waking hour trying to annihilate" a political figure because of policy disagreements.
But Olbermann is well known for devoting a large portion of his program daily for the last several years to slamming President Bush – not only calling Bush a "fascist," but also suggesting last December that Bush administration members, presumably including President Bush himself, deserve to be "in hell" for some of their actions in the Iraq war. Olbermann: "I don’t know what, if any religion you belong to, but I suspect you’ll agree that people who ignored that many foretellings of preventable death should have a long time to think about it in hell!"
The Countdown host routinely ignored the success of President Bush’s troop surge in reducing the violence rate in Iraq, while other media figures acknowledged that the strategy’s success. And, almost three months after President Bush left office, Olbermann still finds reasons to attack him in the Countdown show’s regular "Still Bushed!" segment.
Below is a transcript of relevant portions of the Tuesday, April 14, Countdown show on MSNBC:
KEITH OLBERMANN, DURING THE "WORST PERSON" SEGMENT: Our runner up, the Manatee (REFERRING TO SEAN HANNITY), insisting there was some attempt by President Obama – who was, in fact, totally silent until the captain was rescued – to grab credit for the end of the Somali pirate siege. Ultraconservative Bernard Goldberg, of all people, told Hannity he was wrong: "Remember when liberals wouldn’t give George Bush credit for anything? If he came up with a cure for cancer, they wouldn’t have given him credit for that. And, I’m sorry, Sean. I see that on the right now. It’s like, I don’t want to put Barack Obama on Mount Rushmore for simply being the commander in chief, but we have to stop going out of our way to find fault with every single thing he does."
Our winner, Boss Limbaugh. After the rescue, ultraconservative Jonah Goldberg blogged: "Good for President Obama. He approved the rescue. It was the right thing to do with no small amount of risk, and God bless the SEALs."
So Limbaugh attacked Goldberg, suggesting that the rescue should be made into a movie with Will Smith as Obama; and Cantor, Jindal, Sarah Palin and himself, Boss Limbaugh, as the pirates.
"We just can’t be constant critics. As Jonah Goldberg has pointed out in National Review today, we must, when we see brilliance in action, decisiveness – the SEALs? ... SEALs couldn’t have done diddly-squat were it not for the decisive, cool under pressure, first test passed President Obama. ... And he deserves praise. Jonah Goldberg at National Review was first to point out, he does the right thing, we gotta say so."
There’s actually a crucial point in here. Just as when I protest and will continue to protest Obama’s stance on state secrets and sovereign immunity, that does not mean I hate Obama. So, too, can Bernard Goldberg and Jonah Goldberg congratulate Obama for a well-handled rescue mission and not be described as loving Obama. What the Sean Hannitys and Boss Limbaughs of this planet do not understand is that opposing a political figure or one of his policies does not require you spend every waking hour trying to annihilate that political figure. It is the difference between big D democracy, where critics may agree slightly with those they criticize, once in a while, and a theocracy where it’s all or nothing all the time. Of course, the livelihoods of Sean Hannity and Boss Limbaugh depend on that dangerous, fatal possibility that one nation means only one opinion – theirs.
Boss Limbaugh, today’s "Worst Person in the World"!
OLBERMANN, AFTER INTRODUCING A SEGMENT ON PRESIDENT OBAMA’S DOG: Let’s bring in CQPolitics.com columnist, MSNBC political analyst and now Countdown dog analyst, Craig Crawford. Good evening, Craig.
CRAIG CRAWFORD: I think it’s time for Countdown to get a dog.
OLBERMANN: No. I love’em, but, no, it’s not a very big, it’s not a big studio-
CRAWFORD: I don’t know.
OLBERMANN: -and we’re only here an hour a day.
CRAWFORD: Well, you’ve already got O’Reilly’s show.
OLBERMANN: That would be a female dog.