Olbermann is no longer the worst person in the world.

  • #1
918
16

Main Question or Discussion Point

Olbermann was a news commentator with a strong left-leaning point of view. For that reason, this might get moved to the P&WA forum. I don't watch much TV and I never listened to his show all the way through. I became aware of his show from reading his book "The Worst Person in the World". It was a segment on his show and he would replay it on his web site. So every morning I would spend 5 minutes watching it. He could have renamed it "The Worst Bill O'Reilly in the World" with good reason. O'Reilly couldn't sneeze right to please Olbermann. However, for some reason he stopped doing that segment and he fell below my radar. It's as well. He resurfaced as a blip when he blamed Palin for the shootings in Arizona. It is clear that if the segment were still being shown, it would have been Palin and not Loughner on his list.
http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/41201964" [Broken]
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Answers and Replies

  • #2
Chi Meson
Science Advisor
Homework Helper
1,789
10
... this might get moved to the P&WA forum...
Why wait?

Olberman took a page from the Fox News game plan: be unapologetic, never admit an error, and be absolutely certain, all the time, that your own point of view is totally correct and the "other side" is nefarious and/or brain damaged.

O'Reilly couldn't sneeze right to please Olbermann.
O'Reily would never admit that he ever sneezed. Sneezing is a weakness.
 
  • #3
lisab
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
1,887
616
I can't say I'm going to miss him because I have a strong feeling he's not going away. He'll show up somewhere...maybe even Fox :surprised!
 
  • #4
Al68
Olberman took a page from the Fox News game plan: be unapologetic, never admit an error, and be absolutely certain, all the time, that your own point of view is totally correct and the "other side" is nefarious and/or brain damaged.
Fox News invented that? I don't think so. I watched that game plan consistently played out for decades before there was any such thing as Fox News.

Ever hear ABC? CBS? NBC? Why do you think there was such a large market for Fox News and "right wing radio"? It wasn't because everyone listened to Dan Rather and said to themselves: "Gee, that sounds right. Nothing biased about that Dude". It was because many of us said, "What kind of socialist propaganda is he spouting now? Can we get the other side of the story, please?"

What is with people thinking that Fox News started anything? They just help fill a market that existed for decades already. Are that many people oblivious to the existence of "right-wingers" before Fox News and Rush came around? That many people have cause and effect backwards?
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • #5
OmCheeto
Gold Member
2,116
2,535
However, for some reason he stopped doing that segment and he fell below my radar.
It may have been due to the message from "The Rally to Restore Sanity".

I liked Keith. I'm sad to see him go.

BTW, what does the media have to say about this?

Never mind, I'll try and decipher this.

NYT said:
Friday’s separation agreement
cha-ching!
between MSNBC and Mr. Olbermann includes restrictions
cha-ching!
on when he can next lead a television show
cha-ching!
and when he can give interviews
cha-ching!
about the decision to end his association with the news channel.

The executives involved in the discussions confirmed that the deal
cha-ching!
carries limitations
cha-ching!
for Mr. Olbermann in terms of when he can next work on television
cha-ching! WHO FREAKIN' CARES! cha-ching!
, though he will be able to take a job in radio or on any forum on the Internet. The deal
cha-ching!
also prohibits the host from commenting publicly on the
cha-ching!
deal
cha-ching!
, the executives confirmed.
Oh my.

I think Keith may have some hefty, oh wait, we didn't raise the taxes on, "just got fired and made fifty million dollars", filthy rich people, did we.

Did I say I liked Keith Olbermann?

I was wrong.....

I love Keith Olbermann.
 
  • #6
Ivan Seeking
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
7,213
175
Fox News invented that? I don't think so. I watched that game plan consistently played out for decades before there was any such thing as Fox News.

Ever hear ABC? CBS? NBC? Why do you think there was such a large market for Fox News and "right wing radio"? It wasn't because everyone listened to Dan Rather and said to themselves: "Gee, that sounds right. Nothing biased about that Dude". It was because many of us said, "What kind of socialist propaganda is he spouting now? Can we get the other side of the story, please?"

What is with people thinking that Fox News started anything? They just help fill a market that existed for decades already. Are that many people oblivious to the existence of "right-wingers" before Fox News and Rush came around? That many people have cause and effect backwards?
I WAS a die-hard conservative and Republican for two decades and completely reject comments like yours. Not only were the major networks mostly balanced, we also had shows like Firing Line, Crossfire, Meet the Press, This Week, and probably a half dozen others that provided balance. Firing Line was completely Conservative almost by definition - it was the showpiece for the father of popular Convervatism, William F Buckley. Most shows provided commentary from experts on both sides of the issues. What people like Limbaugh and execs at Fox did was lower the bar for the definition of news to personal commentary and opinions. Rather than reporting the facts, they appeal to emotions.

By the same token, Olbermann was no Tom Brokaw. You are arguing otherwise, which is just silly. The two aren't even in the same league, but Olbermann was in league with Fox in tactics.

When I saw Reagan in Orange County, in 1980, and then read the description of the rally in LA Times the next day, I quit taking the Times. THEY were biased. What they said had little to do with Reagan's actual comments. So I did see media bias at the local level. But, for the most part, the old networks provided balanced news as a public service; and knowingly took a loss in doing so. It was seen as their civic duty. Beyond that, had the media been as biased as you say, Reagan never would have been as popular as he was, and Clinton wouldn't have been raked over the coals for three years.

You are trying to rewrite history.

The single complaint that I receive from Fox fans whom I've convinced to try PBS, is that it's too boring. And that is why Fox and Limbaugh, and Palin for that matter, are popular - BS and conspiracy theories are more exciting than real news.
 
Last edited:
  • #7
Pythagorean
Gold Member
4,191
255
As a non partisan (once libertarian) I always found Olbermann to be th left version of O'Reily
 
  • #8
As a non partisan (once libertarian) I always found Olbermann to be th left version of O'Reily
With just a HINT of Beck.
 
  • #9
180
1
...when he blamed Palin for the shootings in Arizona.
There's too much blame going around these days, and too little of people taking personal responsibility for our own actions.

I hit the gym, today, and am snacking on Kosher Dill Spears tonight instead of chips and salsa.

As for politics, in 2012, I probably won't register for either of our two main political parties. As far as how I vote, they're simply going to have to convince me which one makes more since.

O'Reily would never admit that he ever sneezed. Sneezing is a weakness.
True, but when people are willing to admit their weaknesses, it says something far more human about them than when they pull some tough-man bravado act. Even John Wayne knew that. He was as tough in real life as he was on-screen, but he was as tender in real life as he was sometimes on screen, too.
 
  • #10
Al68
I WAS a die-hard conservative and Republican for two decades and completely reject comments like yours. Not only were the major networks mostly balanced.....
They were far to the left of me. Take my word for it. And they were obviously far to the left of those who became Rush fans when he came around.

They fact that you think they were "balanced" is irrelevant. I wasn't referring to you. I was referring to those of us who saw the networks as socialist propaganda machines, which were a lot of us, in case you were unaware.

I was referring to those of us who wanted to see a grid of little circles on Tom Brokaw's forehead from the brick they threw through their TV set.
 
  • #11
Pythagorean
Gold Member
4,191
255
With just a HINT of Beck.
Oh man, I forgot about Beck. The chalkboard and the conspiracy theories and the emotional arguments all just played together so nicely... For a police state sci fi novel.
 
  • #12
They were far to the left of me. Take my word for it. And they were obviously far to the left of those who became Rush fans when he came around.

They fact that you think they were "balanced" is irrelevant. I wasn't referring to you. I was referring to those of us who saw the networks as socialist propaganda machines, which were a lot of us, in case you were unaware.

I was referring to those of us who wanted to see a grid of little circles on Tom Brokaw's forehead from the brick they threw through their TV set.
Al... you're pretty far right, and I'm yet to meet a Rush Limbaugh fan who isn't solidly right wing, if not entirely GOP. I saw those networks too, and without a lot of the political baggage I think some here carry, and they weren't machines of any kind except maybe money-makers and losers depending on the season. Individuals in any given organization often have the power to make a given story lean one way or the other, and since concepts such as "empathy" are now deemed 'leftist', I'm not sure it wasn't just reporting in the era of Korea, Vietnam, and the 60's-70's in general.

As for Fox News... in my experience the only things I've seen like it (until other US outlets started to follow the model) is 'official state-run media' in strict regimes. The poor quality of reporting, fact-checking, and sheer fiction with fear-mongering is really quite eerie. MSNBC is trying to catch up, but they have a long way to go, and Fox News has the support of a large network of conservative talk radio.
 
  • #13
Oh man, I forgot about Beck. The chalkboard and the conspiracy theories and the emotional arguments all just played together so nicely... For a police state sci fi novel.
The irony is that if someone put that in novel form, a publisher would laugh in their face... except for Beck. He's essentially a televangelist for the truly hypocritical [edit] and the mentally unstable; Beck is NOT running on all cylinders, although I suspect it's a personality issue only.
 
  • #14
67
165
The irony is that if someone put that in novel form, a publisher would laugh in their face... except for Beck. He's essentially a televangelist for the truly hypocritical [edit] and the mentally unstable; Beck is NOT running on all cylinders, although I suspect it's a personality issue only.
I agree about Beck, yet a lot of people have been influenced by Beck.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DpzeI8sgIHU&feature=player_embedded

BTW the local Tea Party Patriots are going to protest at the Pima County Sheriff's office. He is the one who mention hatred in the media after the attempted Giffords assassination.

There is also a move to recall the Sheriff that was started by a right wing radio shock jock.

Bringing this all back to Olberman, he made a contribution to the Giffords campaign that NBC was not pleased about.
 
Last edited:
  • #15
FlexGunship
Gold Member
369
8
I'm yet to meet a Rush Limbaugh fan who isn't solidly right wing, if not entirely GOP.
Okay, I'm going to say something patently absurd, but if you take my meaning carefully, you'll see the message I'm trying to convey.

I like Rush Limbaugh but not because I'm "right wing" or "GOP." In fact, I don't even like the fact that he speaks; I find him entirely annoying. I like Limbaugh for the same reason I like Olbermann, Maddow, and Beck: someone needs to define the edge. (I cautiously leave out O'Reilly, because I think he's a very very very slightly different class of unintentional self-satirist. I controversially include Maddow because of the manner in which she delivers her news-flavored ideas.)

I know it sounds ridiculous, but there need to be voices that "go too far" in every area. I don't think people should take Limbaugh, Olbermann, Maddow, or Beck seriously!! But the ideas need to be thrown out there before being thrown out entirely. I think the biggest problem is that some people retreat to these extremes as some sort of "home base" of political ideology: "When in doubt, I agree with Beck" or some such nonsense.

A rabidly democratic person should still be able to say: "Woah, Kieth, you might have pushed that one too far" in the same way a morbidly republican person should be able to say: "Okay, Rush... enough is enough." We need rails for our political table-hockey. Something off of which ideas bounce and come back. Do these "commentators" always hit the rails? Nope. But if anyone is going to, it'll be one of them!

If Limbaugh or Olbermann says it, then it passes the litmus test for "oversimplification" and the stance warrants a more meticulous review. Unfortunately, I'm not totally innocent. I rely heavily on the Cato Institute and Reason magazine to get my starting points. But, at least I never feel like they are pushing one party over another; the recent excoriation of the GOP by Reason magazine was refreshing.
 
  • #16
Okay, I'm going to say something patently absurd, but if you take my meaning carefully, you'll see the message I'm trying to convey.

I like Rush Limbaugh but not because I'm "right wing" or "GOP." In fact, I don't even like the fact that he speaks; I find him entirely annoying. I like Limbaugh for the same reason I like Olbermann, Maddow, and Beck: someone needs to define the edge. (I cautiously leave out O'Reilly, because I think he's a very very very slightly different class of unintentional self-satirist. I controversially include Maddow because of the manner in which she delivers her news-flavored ideas.)

I know it sounds ridiculous, but there need to be voices that "go too far" in every area. I don't think people should take Limbaugh, Olbermann, Maddow, or Beck seriously!! But the ideas need to be thrown out there before being thrown out entirely. I think the biggest problem is that some people retreat to these extremes as some sort of "home base" of political ideology: "When in doubt, I agree with Beck" or some such nonsense.

A rabidly democratic person should still be able to say: "Woah, Kieth, you might have pushed that one too far" in the same way a morbidly republican person should be able to say: "Okay, Rush... enough is enough." We need rails for our political table-hockey. Something off of which ideas bounce and come back. Do these "commentators" always hit the rails? Nope. But if anyone is going to, it'll be one of them!

If Limbaugh or Olbermann says it, then it passes the litmus test for "oversimplification" and the stance warrants a more meticulous review. Unfortunately, I'm not totally innocent. I rely heavily on the Cato Institute and Reason magazine to get my starting points. But, at least I never feel like they are pushing one party over another; the recent excoriation of the GOP by Reason magazine was refreshing.
Yeah... I'd leave the "edge-work" to the comedians. The thing is, it's all an artificial edge in politics; people say far worse in private life, and far more edgy in theater or comedy. Maybe our journalists should be... journalists: vehicles for a story, means of gathering the story, and a part of an apparatus designed to verify its "facts".

After that... OK, I'm ready for faux-pithy and clever.

Note, I realize that this your view, not your viewing preferences... my comments are terse because my right index knuckle hurts like the devil, so I'm not typing much; I'm going for "direct", if I can't hit, "pithy".
 
  • #17
FlexGunship
Gold Member
369
8
Yeah... I'd leave the "edge-work" to the comedians.
Maybe. Satire has it's place.

But, frankly, when a bill passes, I rely on the folks at both extremes to tell me the best/worth things that could ever possibly come of it. Do I believe in things like "death panels"? No! But, closer review could indicate a less-extreme/more-real concern.
 
  • #18
Pythagorean
Gold Member
4,191
255
But by relying in extreme viewpoints you risk recieving information inteded only to support the viewpoint that have no real objective basis, but misinterpret an already established objective basis to fit their program.
 
  • #19
FlexGunship
Gold Member
369
8
But by relying in extreme viewpoints you risk recieving information inteded only to support the viewpoint that have no real objective basis, but misinterpret an already established objective basis to fit their program.
Well, I think I mentioned that I don't use them as pieces of news or fact. There are guardrails on the highway but I don't use them in the normal course of driving.
 
  • #20
Maybe. Satire has it's place.

But, frankly, when a bill passes, I rely on the folks at both extremes to tell me the best/worth things that could ever possibly come of it. Do I believe in things like "death panels"? No! But, closer review could indicate a less-extreme/more-real concern.
I don't believe that's the case anymore; lies are just too pervasive and too pernicious now for those kinds of outlets to be anything except part of the media-political echo chamber.
 
  • #21
drankin
OmCheeto, talk about golden parachutes!
 
  • #22
100
1
As a non partisan (once libertarian) I always found Olbermann to be th left version of O'Reily
he was less than that. O'Reilley had already made a name for himself. Olbermann took him on as an enemy to ride the coattails of his ratings. i just couldn't watch Olbermann, besides the obvious play on O'Reilley's fame, he only had one schtick, which was an eternal state of pissed-off.

i don't see how people watched it to be honest. guess there's an angry liberal white guy demographic, too.
 
  • #23
OmCheeto
Gold Member
2,116
2,535
OmCheeto, talk about golden parachutes!
:cool:

I was really worried that someone was going to take my "$50 million" literally, and just hammer me, in some, late night talk show kind of way. "Liar! Liar! Liar!"

I should have used the word bazillion, as it indicates just a butt load of money.

I heard this morning that his contract was due to expire in a couple of years, and he's been considering an exit since last April, and he decided now was the time, and they simply paid him off. I think in may be worth 1 or 2 million dollars. But the left wing radio station I was listening to said he was poised to make a fortune with his own new show a few years down the road.

So I'm pretty sure LisaB is right, we'll be seeing more of Mr. Olbermann.

Unless of course, they shoot him.
 
  • #24
100
1
ha! he got mugged by colbert.
 
  • #25
Al68
Al... you're pretty far right, and I'm yet to meet a Rush Limbaugh fan who isn't solidly right wing, if not entirely GOP.
Right on both counts. :smile:
I saw those networks too, and without a lot of the political baggage I think some here carry, and they weren't machines of any kind except maybe money-makers and losers depending on the season. Individuals in any given organization often have the power to make a given story lean one way or the other, and since concepts such as "empathy" are now deemed 'leftist', I'm not sure it wasn't just reporting in the era of Korea, Vietnam, and the 60's-70's in general.
I was referring to economic issues, not wars. But "empathy" as a concept is not leftist by any stretch. The fact that the left fraudulently claims that empathy, or the lack of it, is the difference between left and right doesn't make it so. That's just another example of propaganda.

And the bias I refer to in ABC, NBC, CBS, etc, is not of the obvious kind. It's the more subtle hidden kind cloaked in underlying assumptions and the use of language. As a simple example, many polls have been conducted and reported about how good of a job the President is doing "managing the economy". It's not the poll or the reporting of results that is biased, it is the underlying assumption that "managing the economy" is in the President's job description, like it would be in a socialist country. And they have spent decades repeating such nonsense, despite the obvious fact that nothing even remotely related to the President's job description, or any legitimate authority of government as a whole, both as defined in our government's charter, the Constitution, has anything to do with "managing the economy". And they are referring to the private economy, not government financial matters.

That false underlying assumption is presented as universal, instead of the worldview of just one side.

That's just a drop in the bucket, but it's an example of the kind of bias that is persistent, obvious, and maddening to many, and has been for decades. That's the kind of bias that doesn't exist on right wing talk radio. Their bias is open, and they openly acknowledge, even point out, that their underlying assumptions are not those of the other side.

I have never made the claim that any source is unbiased. It's when the bias is purposefully designed to go unnoticed by the intended audience that is dangerous. When false underlying assumptions, like the single example above, pervades all reporting on economic issues, as if it were objective and unbiased, it effectively propagandizes many people.
 

Related Threads on Olbermann is no longer the worst person in the world.

  • Last Post
2
Replies
44
Views
14K
  • Last Post
Replies
6
Views
2K
Replies
58
Views
7K
Replies
32
Views
7K
Replies
35
Views
4K
  • Last Post
Replies
12
Views
2K
  • Last Post
Replies
8
Views
5K
Replies
47
Views
6K
  • Last Post
3
Replies
69
Views
7K
Top