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Olbermann's back. Whoop-de-doo
by Gene Lyons


For the record, I don't buy Keith Olbermann's alibi that he didn't realize NBC News had a rule against
reporters making political donations. As his frequent invocations of legendary figures going back to
Edward R. Murrow make clear, Olbermann's virtually a scholar of TV broadcasting. He knew.

Historically speaking, avoiding entangling alliances with politicians was as basic to journalism as, oh,
not sleeping with sources or filing stories datelined "Moscow" from Connecticut. Even on the rustic
campus of Unsolicited Opinions Inc., the six-dog, one-man think tank where this column originates,
we have an ironclad policy forbidding political contributions. It only encourages them...

If Fox celebrities remained oddly quiet about Olbermann's predicament, that's because they not only
donate to GOP candidates but make heavily promoted appearances at Tea Party rallies. As Maddow
also pointed out, "There are multiple people being paid by Fox News now essentially to run as
presidential candidates. (Sarah Palin, Mike Huckabee, Newt Gingrich, etc.). If you count not just
their hosts but their contributors, you are looking at a significant portion of the whole lineup of
Republican presidential contenders for 2012."

Meanwhile, feckless Democrats continue to act as if they're waiting for the so-called mainstream media
to save them: the same worthies that gave us eight years of bogus Clinton scandals, sold Saddam's
imaginary WMD like breakfast cereal, championed invading Iraq as if it were the world's biggest
Boy Scout Jamboree, then reacted with horror last year when the Obama White House suggested
that Fox News might not be a proper news organization.

Why is it wrong to give a candidate $2500?  Isn't it a lot worse to have a war criminal on your show
and ask him one puffball question after another and then accept as the gospel truth every lie he tells you?

It's my understanding that after Tim Russert spends an eternity burning in hell,
he has to spend a second eternity just for punitive damages.


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