The president of NBC has officially responded to Joe Scarborough criticizing Keith Olbermann for his attacks on Scott Brown.
In a memo obtained by the Huffington Post, Phil Griffin told his on air staff: "We do not publicly criticize our colleagues. This kind of behavior is unprofessional and will not be tolerated."
Griffin was addressing comments made by MSNBC's Scarborough about Olbermann. As NewsBusters reported Monday, the "Morning Joe" host first tweeted his disapproval of the "Countdown" host's comments about Brown -- "How reckless and how sad" -- reiterating on his program Tuesday morning, "Sad and pathetic.
As a result, Griffin sent out the following memo Friday (h/t TVNewser):
I guess it takes a liberal comedian to bring a liberal buffoon to his senses, for a day after Comedy Central's Jon Stewart scolded Keith Olbermann for his disgraceful rants against Senator-elect Scott Brown, the "Countdown" host apologized.
After showing the full clip of Stewart's fabulous smackdown on the previous night's "Daily Show," the MSNBCer said Friday:
"You're right. I have been a little over the top lately. Point taken. Sorry."
Unfortunately, the apology was to Stewart, not to the object of Olbermann's repeated attacks (video below the fold with partial transcript):
The guy has an hour-long television show that isn't the highest-rated program on cable television, but does fairly well considering the circumstances. Yet, MSNBC's Keith Olbermann, who has expressed his own "unhinged" anger about the Supreme Court ruling that corporations have a free speech right to participate in elections, says there is a deficiency of anger about the ruling.
Olbermann, on the Jan. 22 "Countdown," launched into another one of his abbreviated tirades, or what he calls is a "Quick Comment" and blasted his colleagues in the media for not being as "enlightened" as he thinks they should be.
"I worked full-time in sports for about 20 years and I've worked full- time in news for about 10 years," Olbermann said. "And after yesterday, I must finally say aloud what I have long thought but have been reluctant to voice. The average person in the American news industry appears to be about one-fifth as plugged into the world he or she covers, as does the average person in the American sports industry.
Barack Obama certainly didn't expect to receive as an anniversary gift a previously little-known Republican stealing Ted Kennedy's vacated Senate seat along with the President's precious filibuster-proof majority.
But with Scott Brown's surprising victory in Massachusetts Tuesday night, that's exactly what the chief executive got 364 days after putting his hand on the Bible swearing to protect and defend this great land.
As the Administration and its Party lick their wounds, the recriminations and finger-pointing have become almost as fun to watch as the returns were election night; the excuses for shoo-in Democrat Martha Coakley's colossal collapse comically traverse the political spectrum from the predictable to the theater of the absurd.
Take for example MSNBC's Keith Olbermann who actually smelled a touch of racism in the Massachusetts air Tuesday (videos embedded below the fold with partial transcripts):
During the 2008 presidential campaign, Americans were treated to a number of populist sermons on the "special interests" who would oppose "reform" at any cost to maintain the "status quo" from which they "profit financially or politically." The drug companies, the energy companies, the Wall Street bankers, and the health insurers were the corporate enemies of a just and harmonious America, or so one might have gathered.
Obama was at the vanguard of this populist charge. But since his election, he has proposed health care legislation that would subsidize Pfizer and PhRMA, a cap and trade plan that would drive profits to General Electric, and Wall Street bailouts that lined the pockets of the same Goldman Sachs bankers he so reviled during the campaign. What happened?
Washington Examiner columnist Tim Carney exposes and investigates this monumental disconnect in his new book "Obamanomics: How Barack Obama is Bankrupting You and Enriching His Wall Street Friends, Corporate Lobbyists, and Union Bosses." Carney explores the "political strategy of partnering with the biggest businesses in order to create new regulations, taxes, and subsidies." Those measures, he argues, actually benefit the biggest businesses by crowding out competition, consolidating market share, or giving billions in subsidies directly to those companies.
Comedian Jon Stewart Thursday absolutely tore Keith Olbermann apart for his disgraceful rants against Massachusetts Republican Scott Brown.
As NewsBusters reported here, here, and here, the "Countdown" host this week repeatedly attacked the Senator-elect as "an irresponsible, homophobic, racist, reactionary, ex-nude model, teabagging supporter of violence against woman and against politicians with whom he disagrees."
On Thursday, the "Daily Show" host scolded Olbermann for his atrocious behavior saying, "I think that's the harshest description of anyone I've ever heard uttered on MSNBC, and that includes descriptions of the guys that star in your weekend prison program."
Maybe even more shocking, Stewart ripped the MSNBCer for attacking other conservatives including Roger Ailes, the owner of Fox News.
Better still, the Comedy Central star surprisingly defended Michelle Malkin stating that Olbermann's October 13 comments regarding her sounded "a lot more like violence against women than anything Scott Brown ever said" (video embedded below the fold with transcribed highlights, h/t Story Balloon):
Even more unhinged than usual, and that’s saying a lot, MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann delivered a tirade Thursday night in a “Special Comment” in which he declared the Supreme Court’s ruling, that corporations have a free speech right to participate in elections, was “a decision that might actually have more dire implications than Dred Scott.” High on sanctimony, Olbermann charged:
This is a Supreme Court-sanctioned murder of what little actual democracy is left in this democracy. It is government of the people by the corporations for the corporations. It is the Dark Ages. It is our Dred Scott.
In full paranoia, Olbermann warned: “Be prepared, then, for the ban on same-sex marriage, on abortion, on evolution, on separation of church and state....for racial and religious profiling, because you've got to blame somebody for all the reductions in domestic spending and civil liberties, just to make sure the agitators against the United Corporate States of America are kept unheard.”
And he tossed in some insults of the tea partiers: “Be prepared for those poor dumb manipulated bastards, the Tea Partiers, to have a glorious few years as the front men as the corporations that bankroll them slowly unroll their total control of our political system. And then be prepared to watch them be banished, maybe outlawed, when a few of the brighter ones suddenly realize that the corporations have made them the Judas Goats of American Freedom.”
On Wednesday’s Countdown show, MSNBC host Keith Olbermann defended his recent attacks on Massachusetts Republican Senator-elect Scott Brown by insisting that some of the incorrect claims he made are true when, in fact, two are factually without merit while the third represents one of Olbermann’s typical episodes of distorting the words of a target. Among other complaints, Olbermann on Wednesday claimed that Scott "swore at" high school students at an assembly in 2007, that he has refused to renounce a vulgar threat made against Attorney General Martha Coakley by an audience member at a Sunday rally, and that he demonstrated racism in once suggesting that he wasn’t sure if Barack Obama’s parents were married at the time of his birth.
The Countdown host repeated a myth promoted by the liberal blog bluemassgroup.com that, in February 2007, then-State Senator Scott "swore at a hall full of high school students" as he appeared before a group at King Philip Regional High School in Wrentham, Massachusetts. In reality, Scott was not alleged to have "sworn at" the students, but rather, he angrily responded to and complained about vulgar comments that some students had written about him and one of his daughters – comments which had been posted on the Facebook page of a pro-gay rights teacher at the school – as Scott read the uncensored comments from the site, naming some of the students, in front of the assembly. His actions sparked criticism because he read aloud the profane words as they appeared on the Facebook page, but he was not alleged to have "sworn at" the students.
While it is well known that MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann is the most viciously liberal voice to host a news program within the mainstream media, even he normally tones down his anti-conservative, anti-Republican vitriol when anchoring special events like election results. But during MSNBC’s coverage of the Massachusetts special Senate election, Olbermann’s presentation was more rabidly partisan than if the Democratic National Committee itself were producing the show.
As he anchored a special 10:00 p.m. edition of Countdown, Olbermann not only used one of his "Quick Comment" segments to repeat his infamous attack from the day before on Republican Senator-elect Scott Brown, but he also impatiently interrupted Brown’s victory speech, and, while Brown was still speaking, went on to give a second "Quick Comment" blaming Tea Party protesters and Fox News for the vulgar "tea bagger" term being attached to the Tea Party movement.
At 10:19 p.m., Olbermann delivered a "Quick Comment" in which he sarcastically pretended that he would apologize for his attack on Senator-elect Scott Brown from the previous day in which he had called Brown an "irresponsible, homophobic, racist, reactionary, ex-nude model, tea bagging, supporter of violence against women and against politicians with whom he disagrees."
Amidst the innumerable excuses we're bound to hear for Martha Coakley's defeat, credit Keith Olbermann with likely the most loathsome. The Countdown host would explain away the Scott Brown victory by accusing his supporters of . . . racism. [H/t reader Will H.]
Olbermann floated his despicable theory to Howard Fineman: "the Republicans and the Tea Partiers will tell you what happens with Scott Brown tonight whether he wins or comes close is a repudiation of Obama policies. And surely one of Obama's policies from the viewpoint of his opponents is it's OK to have this sea-change in American history—to have an African-American president. Is this vote to any degree just another euphemism the way 'states rights' was in the '60s?"
I was hoping Howard would have the honesty and guts to immediately tell Olbermann where to go. To the contrary, Fineman initially played along: "wow, that is a good question." But by the end of the segment Fineman screwed his courage to the sticking point and proclaimed that he didn't see racism as a big factor.
Not that they were BFFs before, but Joe Scarborough has now definitively de-friended Keith Olbermann . . .
As NewsBuster Noel Sheppard reported, Olbermann last night unleashed an absurdly over-the-top Special Comment at Scott Brown, calling him "an irresponsible, homophobic, racist, reactionary, ex-nude model, teabagging supporter of violence against woman and against politicians with whom he disagrees."
Joe Scarborough thereafter tweeted that Olbermann's Special Comment was "reckless and sad." On today's Morning Joe, Scarborough fired similar remarks at his MSNBC colleague on live national TV . . .
While mainstream media members continue to belittle her at every opportunity, former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin attracted huge audiences in her first two official appearances as a Fox News Channel contributor.
Debuting on Tuesday's "O'Reilly Factor," the former vice presidential candidate drew almost 4 million viewers more than doubling the combined total of MSNBC's Keith Olbermann and CNN's Campbell Brown.
The following evening on "Glenn Beck," Palin attracted over 3 million -- at 5PM!
Regardless of what her detractors say, Palin was a smash hit (complete numbers below the fold courtesy TVBytheNumbers.com, Tuesday first):
The devastating earthquake in Haiti, which may have killed tens of thousands or more, “reminded” MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann of why ObamaCare is needed in the United States as he saw “what health care reform really means” in Haiti’s “awful message of nightmarish reality.” Later, he seriously contended the Haiti disaster makes “a good frame of reference in terms of the health care issue,” as he speculated about a quake destroying Los Angeles:
How would survivors of something like this here fare in terms of getting on their own feet economically afterwards, with the health care system we have in place right now?
After smearing Rush Limbaugh as a “deranged racist,” Olbermann teased Wednesday night’s Countdown: “We are reminded of what health care reform really means by an awful message of nightmarish reality from a place, a place this time not so very far away.” MSNBC’s on-screen heading, as he spoke, sealed the link between Haiti and the domestic policy: “REAL REFORM NECESSARY; LATEST FROM HAITI.”
Americans love to talk sports. Polite Americans don't talk religion. So when those two things meet, the news media has no idea what to make of it.
Unfortunately for journalists, sports and religion - Christianity in particular - seem to be publicly mingling more often these days. Some star athletes are more outspoken in their faith, while many others regularly find themselves in need of spiritual, if not legal, redemption.
Liberals in the media don't understand religion and religious people, so when they surface on the playing field, the resulting coverage veers wildly from awkwardly respectful to clueless to downright contemptuous.
Fox's Brit Hume caused a firestorm by suggesting on air that Tiger Woods could find "forgiveness and redemption" in Christianity, rather than the casual Buddhism the golfer has said he practices. Woods, whose marriage and career are in melt-down because of his serial infidelities, should "turn to the Christian faith, and you can make a total recovery and be a great example to the world," Hume said. And in doing so, the former anchorman committed several mortal sins in modern secular America.
What's up with Keith Olbermann's strange obsession with STDs? A few months ago, the Countdown host invoked "syphilis" in slurring Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck. Olbermann had venereal disease on the noggin again tonight . . .
Trying to trash Tucker Carlson for accepting sponsorship for his new Daily Caller website, Olbermann suggested that, for money, Carlson might consider endorsing "gonorrhea."
Olbermann indulged his odd obsession in the course of naming his quondam MSNBC colleague tonight's "Worser" person in the world.
Newsweek’s Howard Fineman appeared on Tuesday’s Countdown show on MSNBC to discuss Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s controversial remark that Barack Obama does not have a "negro dialect," and, when asked by host Keith Olbermann why Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell refused to comment on the subject, Fineman argued that Republicans are afraid to engage Democrats in a battle over the issue of race relations, charging that they are "going to really look bad." He went so far as to suggest that Americans are nearly unanimous in viewing the Democratic party more favorably on racial issues, and, after citing the low number of minorities at the Republican convention, went on to charge that "fair-minded people" would say Republicans would lose to Democrats in a debate over racial issues.
Fineman claimed that, in addition to African-Americans, "everybody else in the society pretty much" would view Democrats more favorably on the issue:
Republicans don’t want to engage in a long, drawn-out discussion of who’s more committed to equality in this society, and who has done more politically for the African-American community in the last, oh, say, 40 years or so, because that’s an argument and a discussion Republicans are going to really look bad in, and they don’t want to continue it. Yes, Harry Reid made a very unfortunate remark, and, yes, it’s troublesome, but if you attempt to put the Republican party next to the Democratic party, it’s not only African-Americans who are going to look with the Democratic party with favor on questions of race relations but everybody else in the society pretty much, too.
He soon described "fair-minded people" as being those who would side with Democrats on race:
Former American Ambassador to the UN John Bolton took MSNBC's Keith Olbermann to task last week for accusing US intelligence agencies of deliberately ignoring red flags that led to the failed Christmas day bombing plot (h/t Johnny Dollar).
Olbermann suggested that the CIA and other agencies might have been engaged in some sort of turf war, and allowed the plot to move forward. He insinuated that there was "at least a possibility somebody understood how serious this could be and yet withheld information to make some other part of the counterterrorism system look bad".
Bolton, speaking on the late night Fox News show Red Eye, said Olbermann was making accusations of attempted murder against American intelligence officials. He noted that Olbermann carefully crafted his accusations to avoid legal complications, but that the libtalker's point was quite clear.
Appearing as a guest on Thursday’s Countdown show on MSNBC to discuss Obama's latest speech on terrorism, Newsweek’s Howard Fineman charged that, referring to Republicans, "they’re about division and they’re about fear."
At one point, Fineman even made it sound as if President Bush had been obsessed with leaving office before the next terrorist attack just so he could "claim he kept us safe," as if he were more worried about his legacy than keeping America safe in the long term. Fineman said: "And George Bush, even George Bush said that, you know, we could be attacked tomorrow. He didn`t like to talk about it. I knew him well and knew that he was counting the minutes and the days until he got out of there and could claim he kept us safe."
Crediting Obama with "cool, calm, and collectedness," and a "broad gauge and deep sense of the country," Fineman also voiced agreement with Keith Olbermann’s contention that, unlike President Bush, Obama treats Americans like "grownups" by talking to them realistically about the likelihood that some future terror plots will inevitably be successful:
Sometimes being such fans of President Obama makes liberal media types tie themselves into knots. As I documented earlier today, the New York Times went to great lengths to insist America's rising debt is not the administration's fault.
MSNBC ranter Keith Olbermann decided to try his hand at the absurd apologetics Tuesday by concocting a wild vision of intelligence officials who care nothing about the country's safety, and only about their bureaucratic "turf."
According to Olbermann, this quasi-conspiracy theory is a possible explanation for how Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was able to board a plane bound for Detroit. (video and transcript below the fold - h/t Hot Air's Allahpundit).
On Tuesday’s Countdown show, MSNBC host Keith Olbermann twice claimed that FNC contributor and former anchor Brit Hume’s public recommendation that Tiger Woods convert to Christianity to help solve his personal problems amounted to trying to "threaten" Woods into conversion. Previewing a segment focusing on Hume’s Monday appearance on The O’Reilly Factor to clarify his words from Fox News Sunday, Olbermann teased the show: "Brit Hume and the attempt to threaten Tiger Woods into converting to Christianity. He does it again."
Olbermann also plugged the segment before a commercial break: "Brit Hume has tried to force Tiger Woods into becoming a Christian again. That in a moment."
The Countdown host introduced the segment, contending again that Hume had tried to "threaten" Woods into becoming a Christian: "Brit Hume of Fox News has not only not apologized for his bizarre on-air attempt to threaten Tiger Woods into converting to Christianity, he`s actually gone further."
Notably, in December 2005, Olbermann distorted the words of former FNC host John Gibson from Gibson's radio interview on the Janet Parshal Show and compared the program to "an Al-Qaeda show on Al-Jazeera talking about infidels."
Editor's Note: The following is republished from a January 5 entry at Big Hollywood.
On "Fox News Sunday", panelist Brit Hume offered a hopeful New Year’s message for the fallen Tiger Woods:
“Tiger Woods will recover as a golfer. Whether he can recover as a person, I think, is a very open question… the extent to which he can recover, it seems to me, depends on his faith. He’s said to be a Buddhist, I don’t think that faith offers the kind of forgiveness and redemption that is offered by the Christian faith. So, my message to Tiger would be: ‘Tiger, turn to the Christian faith, and you can make a total recovery and be a great example to the world.’”
As an avid golfer, Christian man, and therefore a witness to the historic fact of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, Mr. Hume clearly offered his message in good faith with honest concern for both Tiger’s future and for that of his family, friends, fans and business associates.
Sadly however, some drones of Secularism have reflexively stomped on their Political Correctness brakes; stinging at Mr. Hume with personal demonization, as if he’d somehow committed a sin against their totalitarian faith:
On the second day of a new feature on Keith Olbermann’s Countdown show, called "Quick Comments," the MSNBC host turned his attention to Neal Boortz -- whom he called a "hate radio host" and referred to as being "dehumanized" -- and others who oppose the implementation of ObamaCare, accusing them of "killing 45,000 people every year," and suggesting that those who seek to block universal health care are as bad as terrorists. As Olbermann cited a dubious study which claimed that 45,000 people die in America each year because they lack health insurance, the Countdown host charged:
What would you do, sir, if terrorists were killing 45,000 people every year in this country? Well, the current health care system, the insurance companies, and those who support them are doing just that. ... Those fighting health care reform – not those debating its shape or its nuance – people who demand the status quo, they are killing 45,000 Americans a year.
Olbermann concluded by comparing ObamaCare opponents to terrorists: "Because they die individually of disease and not disaster, Neil Boortz and those who ape him in office and out, approve their deaths, all 45,000 of them – a year – in America. Remind me again, who are the terrorists?"
On Monday’s Countdown show, MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann picked up on an item posted by the far-left Media Matters for America, and slammed Media Research Center founder and President Brent Bozell as "Worst Person in the World" because the MRC founder recently criticized MSNBC host Ed Schultz for accusing Republicans of wanting people to die. Schultz, from the Ed Show last September: "The Republicans lie! They want to see you dead. They'd rather make money off your dead corpse. They kind of like it when that woman has cancer and they don't have anything for her."
Because Bozell argued in a recent NewsMax article that if "Rush Limbaugh went on the air and said that about a liberal, it would be the end of his career," Media Matters sought to prove him wrong as the group compiled quotes from Limbaugh in which the conservative host had responded to incendiary comments from liberal Democrats like Congressman Alan Grayson, with Limbaugh picking up on the promotion by liberals of abortion and euthanasia, and of liberal support for the kind of socialized medicine plans that in other countries have led to government bureaucracies sometimes denying medical procedures to elderly patients in favor of spending limited tax money treating younger people.
As Olbermann began his attack on Bozell, he incorrectly – or perhaps intentionally – referred to the Media Research Center as the "Media Research Council," and called Bozell "Boze." Olbermann: "But our winner, Brent Bozell, the founder of the Media Research Council. He has given out one of his annual prized-by-the-left, foot-in-his-own-mouth awards to our own Ed Schultz because Ed said, ‘The Republicans lie, they want to see you dead, they’d rather make money off your dead corpse.’"
After reading several quotes from Limbaugh collected by Media Matters, Olbermann mocked the MRC and its founder as he concluded:
On Monday's Countdown show, MSNBC's Keith Olbermann slammed FNC's Brit Hume for advising Tiger Woods to convert to Christianity while appearing on yesterday's Fox News Sunday panel, where Hume has regularly appeared for years and contributed his opinions to the discussion in a way that differs from his manner of moderating discussions in a more neutral way when he used to host Special Report with Brit Hume. Although Olbermann later backed away from likening Hume to radical Muslims, during the show's opening teaser, Olbermann did make such a comparison: "An organization proselytizing, trying to force others to convert to its faith alone, you know, just like Islamic extremists."
At one point as the Countdown host plugged a segment in which he discussed Hume with author Dan Savage, the words "Hume's Holy War" were shown at the bottom of the screen as Olbermann spoke: "So Brit Hume tells Tiger Woods he can be forgiven, but only if he converts to Christianity. Fox has given up all pretense, hasn’t it?"
As Olbermann and Savage went on to make fun of Christianity, the MSNBC host at one point quipped: "'WWJDIHS,' which is: What would Jesus do if he strayed?" Savage brought up fringe religious figure Fred Phelps, who has become infamous for holding protests at the funerals of American soldiers, and lumped him in with Hume, Pat Robertson and Gary Bauer. Savage:
Keith Olbermann: fave of the bad-mother demographic? The question arises in light of a strange TV ad for something called FloTV that aired this morning.
A mother is giving dinner to her kids when she glances at the clock, notices it's shortly before 6 PM, and proceeds to dump the kids plates and toys, pour a bag of flour on the table and . . . throw a glass of milk in her son's face.
Cut to shocked coming-home-from-work hubby at the door. Mom informs him "I just need an hour." Cut to mother, sitting on park bench, watching . . . Keith Olbermann on her cellphone. [Video after jump.]
It was a metaphysical certitude the most biased television news network on the planet would be giddy with Politifact's announcement that Sarah Palin's "death panel" remark won the website's dubious honor of "Lie of the Year."
And MSNBC sure didn't disappoint.
On Monday's "Countdown," fill-in host Lawrence O'Donnell took on the issue by immediately labeling the object of his disaffection "Palinocchio" complete with a picture of the former Alaska governor sporting a large nose.
Even less surprising was how O'Donnell, despite claiming the runner-up list was bipartisan, didn't mention that President Obama was on it (video embedded below the fold with transcript and commentary):
Maybe Leavenworth has a TV studio Keith could use . . .
On tonight's Countdown, Olbermann vowed to break the law and go to jail if ObamaCare requires him to buy private-sector health care insurance. Keith made his macho boast in the course of his melodramatic Special Comment this evening.
KEITH OLBERMANN: Health care reform that benefits the industry at the cost of the people is intolerable and there are no moral constructs in which it can be supported. And if still the bill, and this heinous mandate become law, there is yet further reaction required. I call on all those whose conscience urges them to fight to use the only weapon that will left to us if this bill as currently constituted becomes law. We must not buy federally-mandated insurance, if this cheesy counterfeit of reform is all we can buy. No single payer? No sale. No public option? No sale. No Medicare buy-in? No sale.
I am one of the self-insured, albeit by choice. And I hereby pledge that I will not buy this perversion of health-care reform. Pass this at your peril, senators. And sign it at yours, Mr. President. I will not buy this insurance. Brand me a law-breaker if you choose. Fine me if you will. Jail me if you must.