The folks at MSNBC - and new owners Comcast for that matter - must have been jumping for joy when they saw the Neilsen ratings for their first official night without Keith Olbermann.
As the New York Times reported Tuesday, "The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell" premiere in "Countdown's" regular 8PM time slot attracted almost 50 percent more viewers than Olbermann has averaged recently:
Chris Hayes, Washington editor of The Nation, appeared a bit befuddled Friday night when he sat in for Rachel Maddow on her MSNBC show.
First, here's Hayes talking about former West Virginia governor Joe Manchin, who was elected last fall to represent the state in the Senate (audio) --
HAYES: If you've heard of Joe Manchin, it's probably for one of three reasons. Perhaps you live in West Virginia. Mr. Manchin was the very popular governor of the great state of West Virginia and is now the state's junior senator after replacing the late senator Robert Byrd last year. Or if you followed this show closely last year, you might remember Mr. Manchin for his no vote heard 'round the world. The senator voted against repealing don't ask, don't tell. If neither of those biographical facts about Joe Manchin ring a bell, this one might. He approved and paid for what just might be the single greatest political ad of the 2010 election cycle --
The ad is then played (and can be seen here), with Manchin carrying a hunting rifle and saying this --
Before telling a 100 percent falsehood about Reaganomics on HBO's "Real Time," the MSNBC commentator said the Strategic Defense Initiative would never work because you can't shoot a missile out of the sky with another missile (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Since its inception, NewsBusters has informed readers of the tendency of liberal media members to completely make up economic data when it fits their agenda.
Not surprisingly, this happened on Friday's "Real Time" when host Bill Maher brought up Reaganomics and MSNBC's Rachel Maddow proudly told - she even stood up to tell this whopper! - a 100 percent falsehood about income gains during that era (video follows with transcript and commentary):
From the files of clippings I've saved over the years, one of my favorite headlines -- "Prison populations, costs climbing: $40b a year spent on inmates despite falling crime rate," as published in The Boston Globe on July 28, 2003.
Yes -- "despite".
Not the only time I've seen a headline along these lines, though less often nowadays, its idiocy becoming too obvious to ignore.
As if to fill the void, a variation on the theme has appeared, especially in the wake of the Tucson shooting. It goes like this -- gun ownership rates climb despite falling crime rates. With any luck, this too will be consigned to the dustbin, but don't hold your breath.
Best recent example -- agitprop filmmaker Michael Moore appearing on Rachel Maddow's MSNBC show Monday and saying this --
A gift suggestion for liberal radio host and MSNBC action hero Ed Schultz's next birthday -- a copy of John F. Kennedy's "Profiles in Courage," preferrably illustrated. Maybe some of its narrative will rub off.
Schultz was unintentionally hilarious on his radio show Friday in describing conservative radio host and author Mark Levin's vow to sue "anybody who accuses me of inciting mass murder in Tucson." First, here's more context on what Levin said, as described by NewsBuster Noel Sheppard on Jan. 14, with audio --
A new poll just released by Quinnipiac University finds very few Americans agree with the media's view that heated political rhetoric was responsible for Saturday's tragic shootings in Tucson, Arizona.
What should also surprise all of the so-called journalists that have been accusing conservative politicians and pundits for inciting Jared Lee Loughner to commit this heinous act is that people feel liberals are more responsible for this rhetoric than folks on the right (emphasis added throughout):
Unfortunately for liberals, airbrushing history is so much tougher these days, what with Google and long memories and all.
Here's MSNBC's Rachel Maddow on Wednesday disparaging Sarah Palin for her condemnation of liberals' kneejerk "blood libel" against conservatives in the wake of the Tucson shooting (audio) --
MADDOW: Also, for the record, blood libel is not a generic term. It is not a tough, vivid way of saying, don't say that mean thing about me! Blood libel is a specific historic thing. Maybe the best, less said about that the better, though.
More conveniently for Maddow and ilk, the less said the better about previous allegations of "blood libel" beyond its historical origin as a calumny against Jews.
For going on six days, dishonest media members have blamed prominent conservatives for inciting last Saturday's tragedy in Tucson.
On Wednesday, radio host and attorney Mark Levin threatened to sue anyone - including MSNBC's Chris Matthews, Ed Schultz, Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow, and Joe Scarborough - that tried to tie him to that event (YouTube audio follows with transcript and commentary):
Someone finally -- finally! -- has drawn the obvious correlation between NFL quarterback Michael Vick's killing of animals in an illegal dog-fighting ring and the monstrous injustices committed against blacks during slavery and the civil rights movement.
What's hardly surprising is who's making the connection -- Princeton professor Melissa Harris-Perry, MSNBC's go-to gal for all things racial, appearing last night on "The Rachel Maddow Show" with guest host Bill Wolff to discuss President Obama praising the Philadelphia Eagles for giving Vick a second chance after serving time in prison and Tucker Carlson saying on Fox News that Vick should have been executed.
Harris-Perry, as is her wont, sought to put matters in historical perspective (video after page break) --
Searching for an upside to the WikiLeaks release of secret documents, Late Show host David Letterman on Wednesday night pointed to how such disclosures could have possibly prevented the 9/11 attacks since former President George Bush had disregarded “for months and months and months” the warning “that bin Laden and al-Qaeda were interested in hijacking planes and flying them into buildings,” but not even Rachel Maddow, his far-left guest from MSNBC, bought his spin. Letterman contended:
There is the viewpoint if WikiLeaks had been in business prior to the attack of 9/11 and we knew that George Bush had looked at a document suggesting that bin Laden and al-Qaeda were interested in hijacking planes and flying them into buildings – which largely went disregarded for months and months and months until long after the attack. If we had known that, via something like WikiLeaks, we perhaps could have acted a little more alertly.
In fact, the Presidential Daily Brief to which Letterman referred, the one titled “Bin Ladin Determined To Strike in US,” was presented to Bush on August 6, barely five weeks before 9/11, not “months and months and months” in advance.
The network's Rachel Maddow engaged in one of the least illuminating discussions on legislation I can recall during her show Friday. Here she is talking with NBC News "Senate producer" Ken Strickland on machinations involving possible repeal of the military's don't ask, don't tell policy (video after page break) --
News organization or theater of the absurd? You decide.
During an interview with her MSNBC colleague Ed Schultz on his radio show Nov. 30, broadcast from MSNBC studios in New York, Rachel Maddow said this about liberals in media (video follows after page break) --
Mark your calendar, who knows when you'll see this again.
Rachel Maddow provided two different takes about congressional action on extending the Bush tax rates during her MSNBC show Thursday, the first account characteristically wrong, the second belatedly accurate.
Here's Maddow at the start of the show, describing what occurred in the House that day (first part of embedded video, below the page break) --
In a Saturday Washington Post op-ed, “Save Obama – by running against him,” Tikkun magazine editor Michael Lerner provided a list of “excellent candidates” to run against President Obama “who would unequivocally commit to a well-defined progressive agenda.” Amongst the names Rabbi Lerner forwarded, two from the news media who share his far-left agenda, plus an actress: Rachel Maddow, Bill Moyers and Susan Sarandon.
In my vast, lamentable experience cringing through MSNBC broadcasts, I can't recall a single instance of a left-wing anchor, host or guest talking about tea partiers without denigrating them as racist rubes acting unwittingly on behalf of their corporate masters.
All that changed this past Monday when former DNC chair Howard Dean appeared on "The Rachel Maddow Show" to discuss issues before the lame-duck Congress, specifically the looming expiration of the Bush tax rates (video below page break) --
Think that liberals are slippery when disagreeing with a conservative? They're just as bad during an exchange with another liberal. One didn't have to wait long for examples of this during Rachel Maddow's interview with Jon Stewart on her MSNBC show Nov. 11.
Here's Maddow in the first segment of the interview attempting to draw a distinction between "direct-action activists" such as members of Code Pink and the tea party members who disrupted town hall meetings on health care in August 2009 (video below page break) --
Since George W. Bush released his memoir "Decision Points," familiar cries from the left have surfaced once again claiming that the Fox News Channel was - and remains - in the tank for the former president.
MSNBC talker Rachel Maddow whined about "Fox News's water-carrying for the Bush Administration" during her interview with Jon Stewart last week. She also claimed that Fox "never criticized George W. Bush for anything. Even when he was doing things that were sort of not conservative. They never criticized him."
Unfortunately for Maddow and the legions of like-minded Fox haters making similar claims, the meme is patently false.
Comedian Jon Stewart on Thursday scolded Rachel Maddow for using the word "teabagger" to describe members of the Tea Party movement.
Appearing on "The Rachel Maddow Show" for an oftentimes quite interesting interview, Stewart also criticized others on MSNBC for taking this vulgar joke way too far (video follows with transcript and commentary):
With all the hype about Keith Olbermann's brief suspension and his triumphant return to MSNBC Tuesday, one would have expected his ratings to explode as first-time viewers tuned in to see what all the fuss was about.
When the dust settled, the "Countdown" host's total viewers rose 35 percent from last Thursday's show before the controversy began, but most embarrassingly, Rachel Maddow actually bested the most conceited man on television in the all important 25-54 year-old demographic (via Steve Krakauer):
Writing about Keith Olbermann's "indefinite suspension"/extended weekend away from MSNBC, Huffington Post blogger Chez Pazienza provided a rare moment of illumination at the left-wing site when he wrote this in a post titled "Playing for Keith" --
The Baltimore Sun's media critic is still fuming about MSNBC's pathetic coverage on election night.
In his piece published Saturday, David Zurawik called the cable news network a "liberal prep school" while claiming the behavior of folks like Rachel Maddow, Chris Matthews, Lawrence O'Donnell, and Keith Olbermann was "so egregious" that the "entire realm of TV journalism was diminished in the public mind":
Rachel Maddow's claim that MSNBC is "not a political operation" was thoroughly debunked Sunday by the conservative website Johnny Dollar's Place.
As NewsBusters previously reported, Maddow on Friday defended Keith Olbermann's suspension for violating NBC's campaign finance rules by attacking Fox News hosts for raising money for Republicans. In the segment, she argued that aside from the "Countdown" host's indiscretion, MSNBCers don't engage in such activity.
As the following video marvelously demonstrates, Democrat candidates in recent months went on MSNBC programs such as "Hardball," "The Ed Show," "Countdown," and "The Rachel Maddow Show" to raise money for themselves (video follows with commentary):
MSNBC suspended Keith Olbermann indefinitely … after news broke that he had given the maximum allowable contribution to three Democrats without disclosing it to his employers.
With Olbermann out, MSNBC needed a fill-in, so in steps Chris Hayes, editor of the liberal magazine, The Nation. MSNBC pegged Hayes to fill in for the suspended Countdown host on Friday. His gig was short-lived however.
Several hours after the announcement, Hayes had been dropped. (h/t Weasel Zippers)
For a series of donations to Democratic campaigns in recent years.
Hours after it was announced that MSNBC's Keith Olbermann was suspended indefinitely for violating NBC's rules concerning campaign contributions, his buddy Rachel Maddow came to his defense by pointing numerous fingers at Fox News personalities that have made their own political donations.
In fact, she concluded the show bearing her name Friday evening with a seven minute segment excoriating folks like Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, Mike Huckabee, and Sarah Palin (video follows with commentary):