They are all gone now; the men (and one woman) who were major influences in my early journalism career. The last two died within weeks of each other. They were Jack Perkins and Sander Vanocur, both veterans of NBC News where I started as a copyboy. My list of mentors is long. They were famous then, but most likely unknown to younger people today. Their signed pictures hang on my office wall, reminders of what real journalism looked like.

It was to be expected that MSNBC commentators would publicly wish Keith Olbermann well after his surprise exit last Friday.

But the nonsense that spewed out of Lawrence O'Donnell's mouth Monday evening - "He invented op-ed TV...For eight years...No one in television history has ever done anything like it" - was so sycophantic and factually bereft it was almost sick-making (video follows with transcript and commentary):