Category Archives: Keith Olbermann

>Olbermann Issues Bush Smackdown

>I loves me some pissed off Olbermann!

On last night’s “Countdown,” Keith Olbermann issued a righteous smackdown to President Bush for his response to that planted question that was the finale of his strange, rambling press conference (when the President started shrieking “Mandela! Mandela!” I thought he’d finally lost it).

Honestly, we all had to know that question was a plant; when has President Bush ever given a response so pointed and articulate to a press conference question? Sadly, he was just reading his lines in another pathetic piece of political theater. Wake up, Sheeple, it’s all just smoke and mirrors.

Olbermann wasn’t fooled, in fact, he was outraged. Crooks & Liars has the video and transcript, and here are a few choice excerpts:

Deliberately, premeditatedly, and virtually without precedent, you shanghaied a military man as your personal spokesman — and now you’re complaining about the outcome, and then running away from the microphone?

Eleven months ago the President’s own party — the Republican National Committee — introduced this very different kind of advertisement, just nineteen days before the mid-term elections.

Bin Laden.

And Zawahiri’s rumored quote of six years ago about having bought “suitcase bombs.”

All set against a ticking clock, and finally a blinding explosion… and the dire announcement:

“These are the stakes – vote, November 7th.”

Terrorizing your own people in hopes of getting them to vote for your own party has never brought as much as a public comment from you?

The Republican Hamstringing of Captain Max Cleeland and lying about Lieutenant John Kerry met with your approval?

But a shot at General Petraeus — about whom you conveniently ignore it is you who reduced him from four-star hero to a political hack — that merits this pissy juvenile blast at the Democrats on national television?

[. . .]

But Mr. Bush, you have hidden behind the General’s skirts, and today you have hidden behind the skirts of ‘the planted last question’ at a news conference, to indicate once again that your presidency has been about the tilted playing field, about no rules for your party in terms of character assassination and changing the fabric of our nation, and no right for your opponents or critics to as much as respond.

That, sir, is not only un-American — it is dictatorial.

And in pimping General David Petraeus, sir, in violation of everything this country has been assiduously and vigilantly against for 220 years, you have tried to blur the gleaming radioactive demarcation between the military and the political, and to portray your party as the one associated with the military, and your opponents as the ones somehow antithetical to it.

You did it again today, sir, and you need to know how history will judge the line you just crossed.

Go to C&L and hear the whole thing.

[UPDATE]: ThinkProgress has the goods on the conservative reporter who asked Bush the question.

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Filed under Gen. Petraeus, Keith Olbermann,, President Bush

>“Even Nixon Knew It Was Time To Resign”

>For anyone who missed Keith Olbermann’s Special Comment last night, has posted a transcript.

His words are incredibly powerful in print, perhaps more so than hearing them read on television. I urge everyone to read it and pass it on.

A couple of points struck me as especially pertinent. The first was the warped notion of “public service” to this current Administration:

We as citizens must, at some point, ignore a president’s partisanship. Not that we may prosper as a nation, not that we may achieve, not that we may lead the world, but merely that we may function.

But just as essential to the 17 words of John Wayne is an implicit trust, a sacred trust: that the president for whom so many did not vote can in turn suspend his political self long enough, and for matters imperative enough, to conduct himself solely for the benefit of the entire republic.

But there is no desire to “suspend the political self” in the Bush Administration; in fact, the entire Bush government has been pressed into creating a “permanent Republican majority.” After all, that’s what “Attorney-gate” is about, and to a lesser extent, that is the principle at the root of Plame-gate: the need for permanent war, constant threats of terror, so the American people can turn their fearful eyes to their protector, the GOP.

I am remembering ex-UN Ambassador John Bolton’s appearance on The Daily Show, of all places, in which he informed us that President Bush is only obliged to represent those who voted for him. This is wrong on so many levels: morally, Constitutionally, and practically. But this is clearly what the Bush Administration believes. That’s why the Vice President feels justified in telling a Senator from the opposition party to “go fuck yourself” on the Senate floor. It’s hyper-partisanship: a winner-take-all mentality, that is destroying this country and has brought us to the brink of collapse. It has created a majority of the voting public who feels disenfranchised from the political process. This simply will not end well; it never does.

Olbermann stated that in commuting Scooter Libby’s sentence, President Bush “ceased to be the president of the United States” and “became merely the president of a rabid and irresponsible corner of the Republican Party.” I believe that moment came long before Monday. It came when the president put his signature on Cheney’s torture memo. It came with his recess appointment of extremists and the unqualified to key posts: Julie Myers at the Immigration & Customs Enforcement bureau at Homeland Security, John Bolton to the UN, Lester Crawford as FDA Commissioner, or the recess appointment of Swift Boat financier Sam Fox as Ambassador of Belgium–a “fuck you” to the Democrats if ever there was one.

Olbermann goes on:

It is nearly July Fourth, Mr. Bush, the commemoration of the moment we Americans decided that rather than live under a king who made up the laws, or erased them, or ignored them — or commuted the sentences of those rightly convicted under them — we would force our independence and regain our sacred freedoms.

We of this time — and our leaders in Congress, of both parties — must now live up to those standards which echo through our history. Pressure, negotiate, impeach: get you, Mr. Bush, and Mr. Cheney, two men who are now perilous to our democracy, away from its helm.

Today is July Fourth. Bush and Cheney have steered this ship straight for an iceberg. And the American people are to blame. We are too easily distracted by the latest Lindsay Lohan escapade or Paris Hilton’s jail sentence to pay attention to the real crimes going on in our names. Why is this? Why do millions of people tune out the news of corruption and misadministration from Washington D.C., some even calling it biased or partisan by the “liberal media,” but the latest manufactured celebrity gossip is consumed and even trusted as gospel fact? Why have we not demanded more of our news media, our representatives in Congress, and our government?

Olbermann asks the president and vice president to “achieve a very low threshold” and “display just that iota of patriotism which Richard Nixon showed on August 9th, 1974” by resigning, for the good of the republic.

But they won’t. They are too entrenched in the quicksand of power. And even if they were removed, they leave behind a new generation of civil servants, Regent and Liberty University graduates, partisans who have been brainwashed into the GOP “permanent Republican majority” mindset. I wonder if they will believe that the president is only required to serve those who voted for him (or her) when that president is a Democrat?

It’s that “us versus them, party over nation” ideology that has hijacked the government and spread like a cancer. And I don’t see it leaving with the exit of Bush and Cheney.

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Filed under George W. Bush, Keith Olbermann, Richard Nixon