Faith & Social Justice: In the spirit of Richard Overton and the 17th C. Levellers

Olbermann: Bush’s Hypocrisy About MoveOn.Org Ad

As a MoveOn.org member, I thought this ad was a bit juvenile and not helpful. But Bush’s hypocrisy is enfuriating. So is the fact that Congress could not pass any substantive legislation yesterday, but COULD find time to condemn a political ad. No wonder their approval rating is even lower than the president’s.  Once again, Keith Olbermann tells the truth in a time of media sophistry.

Here are some other appropriate comments aimed at the spineless Democrats who approved this stupid resolution that Sen. Maj. Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) should never have even allowed to come up for a vote. (You never saw the GOP-controlled Senate allow a condemnation of the ads attacking Max Cleland or telling voters that voting for Democrats was voting for Osama bin Laden to blow us up, did you?)  See here, here, and here.

N.B.: I should add that while I enjoy Olbermann’s editorials, he doesn’t do real news anymore than most mainstream media. You have to turn to PBS, C-SPAN, NPR, the BBC, etc. for real, hard journalism. Olbermann’s “Countdown” program is filled with entertainment fluff. But, at least his editorials are a refreshing change from Fox Noise and its clones.  Olbermann steals his line “Good night and Good Luck” from the late, great Edward R. Murrow. But Murrow’s editorials were so effective because they were so rare. He cut his teeth radio broadcasting live from the London Blitz–often in bomb shelters. He did hard, objective news and worried about the effect of television on journalism and on civic life–even as he tried to bend the medium to serious reporting. Olbermann is a pale reflection of that level of professionalism–but still stands out among U.S. TV “personalities,” where the usual choices are fawning rightwing Bush worship or “he said/she said” reporting with little skepticism or tough follow-ups.  Truthtelling is hard to do in an age when news programs are supposed to make money–instead of being paid for by the entertainment shows on AT OTHER TIMES.  I like Olbermann because he tries.

September 21, 2007 - Posted by | media reform, politics


  1. an interesting video, Michael. Thanks for the link. Olbermann’s continuous railing about the “gleaming line” between political and military put me very much in mind of the separation of church and state speech we hear so often (yes, even up here in canada!). an interesting parallel, but one i’m not smart enough to elaborate on yet.

    Comment by Mike Swalm | September 21, 2007

  2. As a daily watcher of Olbermann’s program, I heard this editorial. He has been on this for quite a few days, and probably would have been for a few more if his appendix hadn’t gotten in the way.

    I do agree that his “news” program really isn’t ‘hard hitting.’ I wish he would dispense with the entertainment news in light of deeper things.

    Comment by Dustin | September 22, 2007

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