Sometimes libtalkers just make you shake your head in disbelief. Keith Olbermann trumpeted his most recent example of bias-denail on Daily Kos over the weekend, where he insisted that his show does not tout a partisan agenda, and simply serves as a watchdog against others' unchecked opinions (h/t Olbermann Watch's Johnny Dollar).
I'll wait for readers to stop laughing. Done? Okay. It truly is unbelievable that one of the most partisan and divisive commentators on cable television would even suggest that he pays lip service to those who don't share his views. Olbermann has a right to trumpet his liberal vitriol, but he should at least acknowledge it for what it is.
But Olbermann claimed in post on Daily Kos that he simply challenges the unchallenged, leaving some to wonder, to paraphrase Juvenal, who challenges the challengers?
When Olbermann proclaims, for instance, that Dana Perino is the "worst person" for calling the Fort Hood shooting a terrorist attack, or Bill Kristol is spitting on the graves of the victims for saying the same, who is there to challenge these absurd statements? Or when he hosts Arianna Huffinton, who argues there should be a Glenn Beck exception to the First Amendment, who is there to challenge that statement?
I read with astonishment here and elsewhere that I am guilty of never presenting conflicting viewpoints. Do you know what the easiest form of "good tv" is? Put two guys on who disagree with each other and let them yell at each other...Let loose without rebuttal? Why does that sound familiar? It must be that that is exactly what Olbermann does every time he is on the air: let loose wild accusations without rebuttal. As for neutrality, Olbermann is "pleased to be able to say that I've never put something on Countdown to toe a party line."
I'd rather devote the time to personally rebutting something else that has been let loose into the ether without rebuttal - to putting in a little thought to the equation - than just have conflict because it's pure entertainment.
Yes, political independence is Olbermann's hallmark. Just look at this handy chart from Johnny Dollar:
Sometimes you're left wondering whether Olbermann actually believes the stuff that comes out his mouth. He challenges the unchallenged without challenge, and he avoids partisanship by hosting only liberals and Democrats on his show. For someone who is "not in the entertainment business," Olbermann sure knows how to entertain.