Monday, January 24, 2011

Good night and good luck.

He's smug. He's contentious. He's pompous and at times boorish. He was invaluable and how much he will be missed is yet to be calculated. Keith Olbermann did not make a particularly big deal of it. He briefly stated Friday night that it would be the last broadcast of Countdown. And then he read the final installment of Fridays with Thurber.

There were hints on the web of his conflict with MSNBC. He is reported to have had conflicts with ESPN when he was with them. Maybe his report card once read that he does not get along with others. Personally, I got a bit tired of his "special comments"-- I thought Ben Affleck did a great spoof on SNL. The issues in general have brought on a certain fatigue. They tend to wear on you. But I already feel the void and it's not even Monday night. Lawrence O'Donnell will take his time slot, but no one will be able to take his place.

Evidently, according to the New York Times, it was O'Donnell that Keith recently had a bit of a problem with. His few words on the subject were due to being barred from discussing it by MSNBC, who have also stipulated that he cannot return to television for 6-9 months.

Our loss.

Keith put his money where his mouth was-- in some cases, to his detriment. He made political contributions when perhaps he shouldn't have. He helped create healthcare events around the country that let thousands see doctors for the first time in years, if indeed the first time ever. It was not his pomposity but his passion that made him imminently watchable and, yes, important. He may have been a bit of a windbag, but he was an honest windbag. Where folks like Glenn Beck admit to being "entertainers," who have the credibility of Lonesome Roads, Olbermann seemed real. His interviews were heartfelt. His reaching out to those who have been rejected by Jan Brewer's health programs was empathic and heartfelt.

Undoubtably, Roger Ailes, Rupert Murdoch and the on-air morons at Fox have been dancing for joy. Maybe they have already spoken out. Hannity and O'Reilly and the rest of them. The ones that lie or just blithely misinform. The ones that perpetuate the vitriol, in the name of reporting. states that they have the scoop from John Gibson on what really happened to the "infamous, deplorable Keith Olbermann."

John Gibson? Get serious.

Good luck, Keith.

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