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Olbermann's Ouster Increases Conservative Media Advantage in 2012

MSNBC's actions are setting the stage for a virtual conservative monopoly of the U.S. national political debate going into next year's election cycle.

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Rhodes scholar Rachel Maddow holds her usual slot at 9 p.m. with labor watchdog, Ed Schultz, ending the evening at 10 p.m. A close examination of this lineup suggests that Olbermann indeed was fired for political reasons.

Rachel Maddow was the heir apparent to Olbermann's cleanup batter position. A superstar in her own right, Maddow earned this promotion as a result of hard work and perseverance. Yet, the fact she was passed over for somber, sleepy Larry O'Donnell speaks loudly about how NBC and the media in general intend to cover the 2012 presidential election cycle.

Moving labor advocate Schultz from 6 to 10 p.m. further diminishes labor's impact on U.S. politics. Also, contract restrictions will probably prevent Olbermann from returning to broadcast TV until the fall at the earliest.

All of these actions are setting the stage for a virtual conservative monopoly of the U.S. national political debate going into next year's election cycle.

Keith Olbermann chose Thurber's The Scotty Who Knew Too Much very carefully. The "Who," rather than "That" or "Which," in the title personalizes the pooch. It's a clear reference to himself.

This was a subtle slap at his and our corporate overlords who reward conformity and punish rebellion. The story ends with the moral "It is better to have asked some of the questions than to know all of the answers." If we are to survive as a nation, we should fervently heed this warning.

 
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