Media Blog

The Madness of Keith Olbermann

New for NRD subscribers: “Oh, Olby!: Keith Olbermann Goes Bananas on MSNBC.” An excerpt:

But Olbermann’s most incredible performance by far came after Bill Clinton’s outburst during his interview with Fox News anchor Chris Wallace. When Wallace asked Clinton why he hadn’t done more to connect the dots and stop al-Qaeda, Clinton accused Wallace of doing “Fox’s bidding . . . your nice little conservative hit job on me.” Olbermann took it a step farther. In his telling, Wallace was not only “a monkey posing as a newscaster,” but also a “proxy” whose “sandbag effort” had been orchestrated by the Bush White House. What’s more, Clinton was “brave” for standing up to this “smear by proxy,” and he “told the great truth untold about [the Bush] administration’s negligence.” Naturally, Olbermann quoted “Eric Blair, writing as George Orwell,” and elucidated the many parallels between America under the Bush administration and the totalitarian dystopia described in 1984.
It should surprise no one that Olbermann bristled at the way Wallace “bullied” Clinton. A few days earlier, Olbermann himself had interviewed Clinton and, during the interview, handed the former president a check for the Clinton Global Initiative. “Here’s eight more schools in Kenya — from me,” he said. In Olbermann’s world, that apparently counts as real journalism — but tough questions are off limits.

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