If anyone in the liberal media has no business calling anyone a coward for refusing to take on people with opposing opinions, it's Keith Olbermann. The fragile Countdown host is so defensive about his policy of inviting only yes-people on his show that, as noted here, he recently devoted an MSNBC promo to lamely explaining away his Bert Lahr imitation.
But that didn't stop Olbermann on this evening's Countdown from pummeling Sarah Palin for declining to come on MSNBC. For good measure, the vulgarist variously referred to the former vice-presidential candidate as an "idiot-woman" and twice as an "idiot." Here's how Olbermann teased his attack at the top of the show . . .
KEITH OLBERMANN: Idiot-woman speaks. In front of a big flag, sponsored by a sump-pump company, quote: "somebody told me, you know your [sic] going into enemy territory. I said, it's Chicago, it's not MSNBC." Yah, like you had the courage to come to MSNBC.
Note to Olbermann: when calling someone else an "idiot-woman," avoid misspelling "you're" as "your" in your show graphics [see screencap after the break].
Usually, the crazy rantings of MSNBC host Keith Olbermann can be dismissed as the norm and easily ignored. But on May 5, Olbermann gave a glimpse of an obsession with former Vice President Dick Cheney - a man that has been out of office for 471 days - that was just too bizarre to let go.
Although Olbermann didn't outright absolve the Obama administration for not responding quick enough to the BP oil spill, he channeled the blame in a strange direction.
"The effort to label the Gulf oil spill Obama's Katrina appears to have sputtered, even though, as we will explain, Mr. Obama's administration certainly did allow BP to bypass environmental requirements," Olbermann said. "In our third story tonight, there is a growing pool of evidence, saying nothing of the oil, suggesting a far more apt name for this spill, ‘Cheney's Katrina.'"
Looks like thin-skinned Keith Olbermann is getting defensive about his policy of banning show guests who disagree with him. An MSNBC Countdown promo features Olbermann advancing an absurd non sequitur to justify his echo-chamber approach.
Claiming to be "misunderstood" over his guest policy, Olbermann says he asks questions "to find out if I'm wildly incorrect" about something. Olbermann thereby ignores the obvious: he's unlikely to find out if he's wrong if he hand picks guests who think he's right!
There's a cynical theme growing in the media that Faisal Shahzad, the man accused of attempting to set off a car bomb in New York's Times Square Saturday, was driven to violence by the loss of his job, the loss of his house, and his anger towards former President George W. Bush.
In all of this theorizing -- or what some might call psychobabble -- those making the assertion have yet to ponder if six years of Bush Derangement Syndrome might also be involved.
For over a year, Americans have been warned that so-called "hate speech" directed at Barack Obama and Democrats by conservative talk show hosts such as Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, and Sean Hannity, as well as others at Fox News, is going to manifest itself in violent acts against elected officials and/or our nation.
With this in mind mightn't years of "hate speech" directed at Bush and Republicans by liberal talk radio hosts and MSNBC in particular have incited Shahzad's anger to such an extent that he decided to become a domestic terrorist?
An online conservative radio group has started a petition site called Respect the Great Game to get Major League Baseball to drop Keith Olbermann as a contributor to its website.
The administrators of the Respect the Great Game site ask: "Why does Major League Baseball allow an individual who relishes hate speech to be associated with it?" They include a video compilation of some of Olbermann's more colorful rants to illustrate their point.
Olbermann, a former sports broadcaster for ESPN, Fox, and NBC, is "a gifted speaker with a respectable grasp of the great game," according to the site, "but his nightly tirades on MSNBC are often aimed at the very people that fill the stands of baseball parks across our great land."
Keith Olbermann on Thursday mocked the Southern drawl of Alabama's Republican gubernatorial candidate Tim James.
Last week, James released a new ad claiming that if he's elected governor, drivers license exams will only be written in English rather than the twelve languages currently available for Alabama residents.
The commercial ended, "Maybe it's the businessman in me, but we'll save money, and it makes sense. Does it to you?"
After playing the ad on Thursday's "Countdown," the MSNBC host mocked, "Thank goodness we don't have an official language or anything. I mean, they, they probably won't allow that guy into Arizona" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Back during the Bush administration Keith Olbermann made sure to insist that "we must not confuse dissent with disloyalty" and that "conviction depends upon evidence and due process of law". But that standard seems to have fallen by the wayside now that the dissenters are conservative Tea Partiers.
Baltimore Sun TV critic David Zurawik on Friday used the ultimate liberal insult when he compared Keith Olbermann to Joe McCarthy. Writing about the left-wing cable host's role in the suspension of MSNBC anchor Donny Deutsch, Zurawik mocked, "Olbermann tries to talk like he's Edward R. Murrow, but he operates in the dirty tradition of Joe McCarthy." [Emphasis added.]
Zurawik has also hammered conservatives, calling Robert Novak "a very dark force" in cable news less than two hours after Novak passed away in August 2009, so it's saying something that he's unleashed on Olbermann.
MSNBC suspended Deutsch on Wednesday, after he included Olbermann in a segment on angry cable hosts. Zurawik didn't hold back as he derided, "...Here I come to write once again about what a reckless TV figure Keith Olbermann is -- and how irresponsible MSNBC and NBC News management are for giving him a national platform and the network's credibility to spread his innuendo, invective and smears."
MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell on Wednesday defended a GEICO voice-over actor who referred to Tea Party members as mentally retarded killers.
Last week, Lance Baxter aka D.C. Douglas left the following voice-mail at the offices of FreedomWorks (audio available here):
Hi there. I`m doing a paper about FreedomWorks and I was wondering if somebody could give me a call back. I`m wrapping up and I just have one more piece of information I need to get from you guys -- just need to know what the percentage is of people that are mentally retarded who work for the organization, and are members of it. And oh -- and one final thing, wondering what your plans are, how to spin it when one of your members does actually kill somebody, wondering how, if you`ve got an actual P.R. spinning routine planned for that or are you just going to take it when it happens. Just curious. So, give me a call when you get a chance. Thanks so much.
Baxter has since been fired for this disgusting message, and O'Donnell filling in for Keith Olbermann on Wednesday's "Countdown" actually came to the actor's defense claiming he was only exercising his First Amendment rights (video follows with transcript and commentary):
On Monday’s Countdown show, MSNBC's Keith Olbermann used his regular "Worst Person" segment to accuse Rush Limbaugh of having "blood on your hands" for the Oklahoma City Bombing in response to the conservative talk radio host pointing out that, while some liberals have tried to blame talk radio for inspiring Timothy McVeigh to commit mass murder, McVeigh himself actually admitted to being motivated by the 1993 raid on the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, and even perpetrated the attack in Oklahoma City on the two-year anniversary of the disastrous event.
Ignoring the argument that the federal government might have more successfully freed the children from the compound alive if other methods had been used, Olbermann instead distorted Limbaugh’s words and claimed the talk radio host "wants a memorial to David Koresh."
Olbermann quoted Limbaugh as the conservative talker alluded to the fact that the innocent children whom the government was trying to rescue did not survive the raid, and the tendency by liberals to ignore McVeigh's choice of April 19 as the date for his terrorist act thus linking it to Waco, as the MSNBC host answered Limbaugh’s rhetorical question about whether the Waco raid or talk radio inspired McVeigh by asserting that it was indeed the fault of conservative talk radio:
Painting conservatives as racists is a favorite pastime of the mainstream media and a recent move by Republican Virginia governor Bob McDonnell gave them more ammunition to do just that.
McDonnell issued a proclamation on April 2 stating April would be Confederate History Month, but failed to note the role slavery played in the U.S. Civil War that lasted from 1861-1865. Commentators and journalists seized upon McDonnell's omission as proof that conservatives are inherent racists, despite an apology and later inclusion in the proclamation of a strong statement condemning slavery.
In his apology, McDonnell called slavery an "abomination" and explained that the proclamation was "solely intended to promote the study of our history, encourage tourism in our state in advance of the 150th Anniversary of the beginning of the Civil War, and recognize Virginia's unique role in the story of America."
These allegations of racism against conservatives have percolated in the media since Barack Obama's election in 2008. "Confederate" or "Confederacy" has been used 60 times in news reports on ABC, CBS and NBC since November 4, 2008, but it's this proclamation, coupled with the anger over the recently passed health care reform, that had some in the media wondering if conservatives were ready to wage Civil War Redux.
Liberals in the media have been busy parading around Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center to bash the right. As befits his organization's MO, Potok, pictured right in a file photo, has done the best he can to link recently-arrested militia members to the Tea Party movement and conservatism generally.
Potok's job may have just gotten a bit harder, and the liberal media may need to find another way to discredit their political opponents. It turns out most of the militiamen were active voters, and at least one was a registered Democrat. Party registrations for the rest are not yet known.
The new facts undermine Potok's thinly-veiled suggestions that Republican politicians and conservative pundits are at least indirectly responsible for militia activity. NPR, Keith Olbermann, and Chris Matthews may need to find a new issue with which to slander the right (h/t Prof. Reynolds).
On Wednesday's Countdown show, MSNBC host Keith Olbermann used his regular "Quick Comment" segment to lecture Florida Republican Senate candidate Marco Rubio for recently remarking that people like Olbermann "hate America" and should be traded to other countries in exchange for immigrants who love America. As the MSNBC host referred to his own great grandparents who immigrated to America "for its opportunity and its freedom," Olbermann charged that they had come to this country to escape people like Rubio: "Mr. Rubio, I am the great grandson of immigrants, as you are the son of immigrants, who came to this country for its opportunity and its freedom. And I know one thing for sure: my ancestors and yours were trying to get away from people like you."
Notably, just over a year ago on the March 24, 2009, Countdown show, Olbermann seemed to express a negative view of American "values" generally when he mocked the name of Gary Bauer's American Values organization as sounding like a "discount septic tank operation." Olbermann: "Gary Bauer, former presidential candidate, former Reagan domestic policy adviser and now president of American Values which, despite the name, is not a discount septic tank operation, writing at Politico a mere two months after the last of dozens of conflicting Pentagon reports suggested with almost no verification that 61 former Gitmo detainees had been identified as returning to terrorism."
In case there are any residual doubts about how bad the tea partiers have been treated, here are the Top Five ways the left and the media have abused a grassroots movement. The coverage has been so hateful and so biased, it was almost impossible to narrow the list. Here they are in reverse order, just in time for the big tea party events April 15:
5) Protesters are Anti-Government
The media and the left portray tea parties as "anti-government" because it undermines a patriotic grassroots movement. Tea partiers aren't anti-government, they are anti-big government. That's just not the story journalists tell. The "anti-government" theme is strong, cropping up in more than two dozen stories in The Washington Post and New York Times combined. Very few of them mentioned the word "big" in reference to government.
Instead, it's NPR's Liz Halloran claiming tea parties have been boosted by "restive Republicans who have found refuge in the year-old anti-tax, anti-government uprising." Or Frank Rich of The New York Times who compared tea partiers with Andrew Joseph Stack, the man who flew a plane into an IRS building. "Stack was a lone madman, and it would be both glib and inaccurate to call him a card-carrying Tea Partier or a ‘Tea Party terrorist.' But he did leave behind a manifesto whose frothing anti-government, anti-tax rage overlaps with some of those marching under the Tea Party banner."
Mike Barnicle has accused "talk radio" of serving as "allies" and a "megaphone" for the worst fringe elements on the right. That's how the former Boston Globe columnist justified the MSM's focus on the right-wing fringe while downplaying that of the left. [H/t reader Ray R.]
Barnicle floated his defense of the MSM on today's Morning Joe. To their credit, Mika Brzezinski and Andrew Ross Sorkin of the NY Times argued that the fringe left has historically received a pass from the MSM.
On Monday’s Countdown show, MSNBC host Keith Olbermann reaffirmed his accusations of racism against both the Republican party and Tea Party activists, and even tied in the recent racist statements made over the intercom at a Wal-Mart by a disgruntled employee as he tried to link isolated incidents of racism to these mainstream organizations. After recounting reports that someone shouted the "N" word at black members of Congress as they walked past protesters outside the Capitol, Olbermann continued:
But in a backwards, sick-to-my-stomach way, I would like to thank whoever shouted at Mr. Lewis and Mr. Carson for proving my previous point. If racism is not the whole of the Tea Party, it is in its heart, along with blind hatred, a total disinterest in the welfare of others, and a full- flowered, self-rationalizing refusal to accept the outcomes of elections, or the reality of democracy, or the narrowness of their minds and the equal narrowness of their public support." On Saturday, that support came from evolutionary regressives like Michele Bachmann and Jon Voight. On a daily basis that support comes from the racists and homophobes of radio and television: the Michael Savages and the Rush Limbaughs.
Appearing on Monday’s Countdown show, MSNBC analyst Howard Fineman – also of Newsweek – dismissed Republican promises of working to repeal ObamaCare, suggesting that because it would be nearly impossible to have the numbers in Congress to do so after the next election, Republicans are merely using the issue as a fundraising and political ploy: "This isn`t about mathematics, Keith, it`s about theology – and fundraising, as you pointed out. ... But the Republicans aren`t interested in fixing anything. They`re interested in holding out this kind of almost anti-messianic hope that they`re somehow going to be able to repeal the thing."
Fineman also argued that because the ObamaCare bill does not include either the government-run "public option" or a single-payer system, that in reality it is a "preservation and enhancement, if you will, of the existing system."
As he listed factors that helped Democrats successfully pass ObamaCare, Fineman at one point seemed to make Olbermann a little nervous that some would tie the "birther" conspiracy theory in with his contention that President Obama "comes from a country of long-distance runners and was one," as he credited Obama with "persistence."
When did Larry O'Donnell rip the "Question Authority" bumper sticker off his old Volkswagen van?
Liberals normally love to celebrate those who "speak truth to power." But Larry O'Donnell is bent out of shape that Fox News' Bret Baier had the chutzpah to challenge and, yes, interrupt, Pres. Obama when interviewing him today about ObamaCare. Larry displayed his sudden deference to high-office on this evening's Countdown, subbing for Keith Olbermann.
Amusingly, one of my liberal faves declined to subscribe to Larry's script . . .
Michael Moore: crusader and "common-man" - with a net-worth in the range of $25-50 million, appeared on "Countdown with Keith Olbermann" with fill-in Lawrence O'Donnell March 15, continuing to fight the good fight against capitalism and health insurance companies.
Moore predicted the Democrats' ObamaCare will pass, "But this bill, as good as many of the thing are in the bill, you know - young people can stay on their parent's insurance until 26, that's a great thing - it's a death sentence for literally tens of thousands of people who are going to get sick, or have been sick, and because of their preexisting conditions."
To Moore, the current health care reform proposal does not go nearly far enough. He favors a universal single-payer system that would effectively be a government take-over of one-sixth the economy.
With the help of the MRC's talented Bob Parks, the Culture and Media Institute produced a video based on its report, "Sex, Violence and Hate: the Top 10 Most Disgusting Attacks on Conservative Women."
From Playboy magazine's "hate f---" list to comparing Sarah Palin to a case of "herpes," the media took every opportunity to tear down conservative women, not based on what they had to say or the values they promoted, but by commenting on their looks and perceived sexual behavior in incredibly misogynic ways.
Be sure to visit the MRC's video sharing Web site, Eyeblast, for more examples of liberal bias.
While conservatives like Mark Levin went to the radio barricades to protest the unconstitutionality of House Rules Committee chair Louise Slaughter just passing over the need for a House vote on the Senate health care bill, the networks stayed quiet last week. It did come up on Thursday night's Countdown on MSNBC.
Lawrence O'Donnell called it the "self-executing rule." I can practically hear Levin yelling "That's right! You liberals will be cutting your own throats with it!" Washington Post blogger Ezra Klein was warming up to the Slaughter solution, suggesting "consistent innovation" is what makes liberalism special:
The Media Institute, a Washington-based non-profit, has called on Keith Olbermann to apologize for comparing one of its Jewish staff members to a Nazi collaborator.
During a January 21 screed regarding the controversial Supreme Court decision Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission -- in which the Supreme Court granted all companies the same rights as MSNBC's parent company GE -- Olbermann called the Media Institute's Floyd Abrams, a Jew, "the Quisling of freedom of speech in this country."
Vidkun Quisling, for those who don't know, was a Norwegian Nazi collaborator who aided in the Third Reich's conquest of his country by disclosing vital defense information to the Nazis. If Benedict Arnold had been complicit in genocide, we might consider Quisling his Norwegian equivalent.
One of the left's knocks on conservatives has been claiming they're demagogues that play on emotion to push a certain point of view. It's been said about Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and the Tea Party movement.
However, HBO's "Real Time with Bill Maher" host Bill Maher doesn't seem to take issue with using trumped up emotions to push an agenda. The difference - he is approaching things from the opposite end of the ideological spectrum. Maher appeared on MSNBC's March 10 "Countdown" and defended his demand from his own March 5 program that President Barack Obama quit smoking. The reason - so he would get angry and use that emotion to promote his agenda.
"No, what I was - you know, the point of the rule was that when people quit smoking, they get angry," Maher explained. "And I like my president angry, because, you know, considering how much in this country people are poisoned, ripped off and lied to, we should all be angry, but especially that guy, who has to deal with Congress every day in trying to get this health care bill through and all that. And you know, I like him when he's out on the stump in a sort of a partisan mode. I think his biggest mistake, that he has made, in his first year, was to out put bipartisanship ahead of fixing the country. He spent all his political capital on getting three damned votes for that stimulus bill instead of coming in with all the energy from the election and saying, ‘You know what, we're in a crisis mode, I won this election by a sizable mandate, here's what we're going to do. If you don't like it, Republicans, you can suck on it.'"
March is Women's History Month, in which we acknowledge the accomplishments and contributions of women in history and in society today.
But for a select group of women - conservative women - their accomplishments and contributions are rarely celebrated but often demeaned and mocked in sexist - and crassly sexual - ways.
The Culture & Media Insitute looked back at what the media had to say over the past year about some of today's most prominent conservative women, including Michelle Malkin, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, Sarah Palin and Liz Cheney, and compiled a list of the 10 worst attacks on these women who dare to speak out in favor of conservative values.
Much of the criticism was the worst sort of misogyny with a dose of violence and disgusting adolescent sex references thrown in for good measure. The media outlets in question ranged from Playboy magazine to MSNBC to Sirius XM radio and included comments from both men and women.
The message that rang through loud and clear was that perspectives from conservative women were not appreciated or welcomed, and if a woman stepped out of line, she deserved whatever treatment she received.
More and more it's becoming clear that when Keith Olbermann takes a night off from "Countdown," and Lawrence O'Donnell fills in for him, viewers are getting the same hyperpartisan, hate-filled Democrat talking points.
Consider the reaction that Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) got from O'Donnell Tuesday evening after the Congressman called the folks at "Fox & Friends" liars earlier in the day.
"Congressman Anthony Weiner, Democrat of New York, thank you, thank you, thank you" (video embedded below the fold with transcript and commentary, h/t Right Scoop):
"Campbell Brown . . . the only non-partisan cable news anchor at 8 pm." -- CNN description of Campbell Brown
"Non-partisan": right. The hit that Brown, with help from reporter Dana Bash, put on Jim Bunning this evening was worthy of that hyper-partisan guy over at MSNBC in the 8 PM ET slot.
Bash first narrated a classic of the liberal media genre: an anecdotal story of someone allegedly hurt by hard-hearted Republican policies. Bash claimed that "in the real world," Bunning's position is having a "devastating effect" on people like single mother Madonna Alvarez.
Keith Olbermann Wednesday went after "a fired MSNBC employee" who likely was the network's former general manager Dan Abrams.
During a revised "Worst Person in the World" segment, the "Countdown" host once again took issue with criticism from Abrams' website concerning his statements about Tea Parties being all white and how hypocritical this is given the lack of diversity on MSNBC's lineup.
"There are at least 23 minority newscasters, hosts, part time hosts, paid contributors and correspondents from NBC on MSNBC`s lineup," said Olbermann.
"Perhaps the reason that Mediaite took a Tea Party`s word for it is that this is the same site of a fired MSNBC employee, and in his attempt to implant his bitterness towards this place, to plug or weave it into his website, he has wigged out" (video embedded below the fold with transcript):
Update further down in bold recounting thatHouse Democratic Whip James Clyburn once described health care reform as being part of "rectifying effects of past discrimination," which Chris Matthews referred to as "reparations."
On Tuesday’s Countdown show, MSNBC host Keith Olbermann picked up on an item from the far left Media Matters for America to charge that conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh is "putting on his sheet" and "dropping any remaining pretense that the opposition to health care reform is not flat-out racism." Inspired by a quote in which Limbaugh used the terms "civil rights" and "reparations" while discussing health care reform with a caller, Olbermann began the segment on Limbaugh by recounting what he viewed as "race-baiting" against President Obama. Olbermann:
There is no mystery as to why President Obama has been accused more than any other recent Democratic President of being socialist, fascist, communist, take your pick. The ugliest surviving strain and stain in American politics is still race-baiting. But it`s particularly offensive when it surfaces so very blatantly. Maybe it is better this way, though. Rush Limbaugh has declared that the President`s health care reform package is a civil rights bill and constitutes reparations.
Keith Olbermann has turned down the Dallas Tea Party's invitation to come to its one year anniversary gathering this Saturday to see just how diverse its members are.
As NewsBusters reported Monday, in response to Olbermann's claim that Tea Partiers are all white, the Dallas group produced a video demonstrating how wrong the "Countdown" host was while asking him to attend Saturday's festivities so that he could see for himself.
On Tuesday's "Countdown," Olbermann declined (video embedded below the fold with transcript):