Really now, so liberal pundits are finally discovering what conservatives have been saying for years: that Keith Olbermann is an egotistical maniac, blowhard, hypocrite and all-around joke. Funny that.
I am coming late to this rodeo, but there's a good reason for that. I have been on this nasty horse before, long before many of my colleagues, and I have promised myself I would not mount again without taking 24 hours to first think about it.
Well, the 24 hours are up, and 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. Olbermann tries to talk like he's Edward R. Murrow, but he operates in the dirty tradition of Joe McCarthy.
I'll give you a link to me criticizing Olbermann as a danger to an informed and reasoned democratic discourse. And then, I'll give you a link to him attempting to smear me in response. But first let me commend the short-lived MSNBC guest host Donny Deutsch for essentially saying this week what I have been saying the last two years: That if you want to talk about the inflammatory rhetoric that poisons our media today, you better include Olbermann in that discussion along with Glenn Beck of Fox News and syndicated radio host Rush Limbaugh.
Only Deutsch and his producer "said" it by including video of Olbermann in a montage on MSNBC showing "angry" speech, and got sent home in the middle of a planned weeklong guest-hosting run. As much of a shock as this will be to some of my colleagues, it does appear based on what happened to Deutsch that there is more room for self-criticism on Fox News than there is on MSNBC. Think about it -- I did for 24 hours before writing that sentence.
Here's video showing what got Deutsch in trouble. Brian Stelter, at the New York Times Media Deocoder blog, reported it first and most thoroughly, and Olbermann is now attacking him, too.
That was one of McCarthy's favorite tactics -- not just to push back, but to push back in a way meant to damage the reputation of anyone who would dare criticize him.
You can read Stelter's coverage here, along with the words of Olbermann. The former sportscaster, whose ratings only look good if you compare them to CNN's as opposed to those of the hosts on Fox who bury him, has already done damage to the reputation of MSNBC and NBC News with the reckless words he spewed on the night Scott Brown was elected to the Senate.
As they say in 24/7 Cable TV Land, I think I'll leave it right there for now, and let his words speak for themselves -- the ones that called Brown an "irresponsible, homophobic, racist, reactionary, ex-nude model, tea bagging, supporter of violence against women and against politicians with whom he disagrees." Is that angry and inflammatory enough for you?