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Obermann Swings!
September 7, 2005 2:18 AM   Subscribe

The City of Louisiana. Keith Olbermann has crystallized my thoughts exactly(embedded wmv, qt vid here) regarding the ineptness (or is it the complete indifference?) that has played out for us in the past week.
posted by thedoctorpants (66 comments total)

 
Wow. That was amazing. Walter Cronkite would've been proud.
posted by doctor_negative at 2:43 AM on September 7, 2005


[This is VERY good tv, and I don't say that often.]

This is the kind of TV that I think Jon Stewart would appreciate, and I appreciate myself.

Keith Olbermann in Wikipedia.
posted by gen at 2:53 AM on September 7, 2005


I stood up and cheered when I watched the video.
posted by thedoctorpants at 2:53 AM on September 7, 2005


What a pedantic wanker. Anyone could have made that slip of the tongue and despite all of his obvious faults, Chertoff is under enormous pressure - he spoke wrong, so what?

I don't necessarily disagree with what this clown's saying but it's just another op-ed piece isn't, but with film? Maybe its well spoken or well written but...this doesn't warrant its own FPP in my opinion, to put it gently.
posted by peacay at 2:54 AM on September 7, 2005


A lot of good similar videos available at http://onegoodmove.org/1gm.
posted by blueberry at 2:55 AM on September 7, 2005


Solid opinion. Really hits home. I hope someone posts the text here.
posted by filmgeek at 3:00 AM on September 7, 2005


Peacay. If you don't get what he said I'm not going to explain it to you. I'm sure Marie Antoinette's comment was also just a slip of the tongue.

Well, I can try..

He was using that comment as a starting point. He was actually pointing towards a much larger problem that exists in our country and, especially, in our gov't.

If he he was talking about only 'the slip' he would have had a much different editorial and I would not have posted the damn thing.

It's all about understanding context and the theme.
posted by thedoctorpants at 3:01 AM on September 7, 2005


the text is posted in the entry.
posted by thedoctorpants at 3:02 AM on September 7, 2005


Like I read somewhere, I think it did suffer a bit for the fact that it was hung on that slipup -- but really, it was just another straw.

Olbermann is a good guy.
posted by blacklite at 3:07 AM on September 7, 2005


thedoctorpants, I got it. It was the backbone or at least bookends of his spiel. The housebrick of the year award for subtle irony. He may be a good guy blacklite, but this was still a single link op-ed piece. I'll bow out though if you all want to soak up the attitude.
I would have thought that there were ample more important factual pieces [thanks orthogonality] around that could have either bolstered this FPP or have been the main emphasis anyway.
posted by peacay at 3:28 AM on September 7, 2005


peacay, you seem to be angry with the wrong people.
posted by qwip at 3:38 AM on September 7, 2005


What a pedantic wanker. Anyone could have made that slip of the tongue and despite all of his obvious faults, Chertoff is under enormous pressure - he spoke wrong, so what?

Well pecay, FEMA also sent a load of "refugees" to the wrong city of Charleston. But sure, anyone could have made that mistake too. It would be wrong for us to assume that FEMA really are as clueless as their words and deeds suggest.
posted by three blind mice at 3:39 AM on September 7, 2005


It's embedded windows media, btw, not quicktime. Shame.
posted by dabitch at 3:51 AM on September 7, 2005


This refuses to load properly as embedded video for me, so here's a direct link.
posted by Treeline at 4:05 AM on September 7, 2005


Embedded Quicktime version mirrored here.
posted by vhsiv at 4:57 AM on September 7, 2005


Thanks, thedoctorpants. We need more of this on our primetime.
posted by tidecat at 5:48 AM on September 7, 2005


I though the city/state mixup was a slightly forced entry into his piece, but the heart of the piece itself was spot on.

If none of you have watched Olbermann before -- and given the general aversion to cable news talking head shows, I'd understand -- I'd encourage you to start. He is by far the most clear-headed of the bunch. Yes, he delves into the absurd (i.e. Michael Jackson) -- this is cable news, mind you -- but when he does politics he's usually on the mark both with his questions and his own analysis.
posted by schoolgirl report at 6:15 AM on September 7, 2005


Well Michael Jackson will save them all.
posted by peacay at 6:23 AM on September 7, 2005


He is by far the most clear-headed of the bunch.

And a former sportscaster shall lead them. KO is a light in the darkness. Truly impressive. He speaks for me. Peacay, the pro-Bush bluster doesn't cut it on this one. Bush has so undermined our national security, which always relied on our ability to come together in times of crisis, that our nation's ability to respond to this seems completely inadequate.

More than lying us into war, more than casually outing CIA operatives for political vengeance, more than blatantly favoring the wealthy and the wacko right with policies that accomplish nothing good for the country, this episode defines what the Republican agenda is all about. The harder they come, the harder they fall. Bush is done. Stick a fork in his administration.
posted by realcountrymusic at 6:38 AM on September 7, 2005


Olbermann rocks. Best news show on TV, and kudos to him for a piece of old-school commentary. Well thought out, well presented, clear, and long enough to make its point - rather than yet another 12 second rabid sound bite from one side's talking head or another.
posted by JWright at 6:47 AM on September 7, 2005


Fantastic.
posted by Ynoxas at 7:02 AM on September 7, 2005


Holy crap. We've all heard this kind of condemnation of office before from all kinds of would-be pundits on the web, but to hear it straight up from a major news source is phenominal. And most interestingly, he's not the only one, just the latest and most heart-warming.
posted by Imperfect at 7:10 AM on September 7, 2005


Good on him.
posted by sonofsamiam at 7:11 AM on September 7, 2005


best photoshop evar.
posted by wah at 7:16 AM on September 7, 2005


zing!
posted by mcsweetie at 7:16 AM on September 7, 2005


[corrected fpp link to say wmv and added qt link]
posted by jessamyn at 7:18 AM on September 7, 2005


Wow. Double-plus good.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 7:55 AM on September 7, 2005


Keith Olbermann for President!!! Jon Stewart for Vice President!!! It is time that our country became united in favor of more efficient government, and I think that a certain extended cable talkshow host who was fired by ESPN and another certain extended cable talkshow host who used to do jokes about asslicking at Rascals on the Jersey Shore are just the people are country needs right now. Please join me in bringing this campaign to the people (making websites, literature, etc.) Thank you.
posted by esquire at 8:12 AM on September 7, 2005


Is there any more tedious MeFi member than esquire?

The answer may not surprise you.
posted by sonofsamiam at 8:14 AM on September 7, 2005


Keith Olbermann has been the thinking girl's crush since his early days on ESPN. It's been nice to see him break out of the Sports ghetto.
posted by ereshkigal45 at 8:35 AM on September 7, 2005


Frankly, it's surprising and refreshing to hear/read a well written editorial delivered in a professional manner.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:45 AM on September 7, 2005


> What a pedantic wanker. Anyone could have made that slip of the tongue and despite all of his obvious faults, Chertoff is under enormous pressure - he spoke wrong, so what?

I think the point of using the slip was that it exemplified the lack of understanding and competence, not that Chertoff actually believes that Louisiana is a city. He even calls it a slip of the tongue and says about as much in the beginning of the piece, then moves on to the substance of the critique.

For what it's worth, anyone could have made that slip. That Chertoff is under pressure is no excuse for his abysmal performance. He and Brownie should be spending life in prison for their criminal incompetence. As for Bush, well saying what I think would likely win be a visit from the secret service, and I'm in Canada.
posted by holycola at 8:50 AM on September 7, 2005


is this kind of thing unusual on American TV?
posted by gwildar at 8:53 AM on September 7, 2005


Keith Olbermann has been the thinking girl's crush since his early days on ESPN. It's been nice to see him break out of the Sports ghetto.

Someone speculated that sports journalists are more competent because it's a field where talking points and spin are meaningless. At the end of the day, everyone knows who played well and who played poorly. Someone trying to claim, "we should be playing the 'blame game' over who lost last night's game" would be laughed at. That would explain a lot about Olbermann.

For some reason, though, the MSNBC schedule in Boston did not broadcast Olbermann that evening.
posted by deanc at 8:54 AM on September 7, 2005


Someone needs to tell esquire that satire should actually be funny. Otherwise it ends up sounding like the bleatings of a blowhard with a stick up his ass.
posted by clevershark at 8:57 AM on September 7, 2005


[the administration] has just proved that it cannot save its citizens from a biological weapon called standing water.

Yep.
posted by Miko at 8:59 AM on September 7, 2005


Just got back from work... Peacay, no harm no foul.. No attitude here. My first post..after a long time of reading.. I will fill 'er up more next time..

I am just so happy to hear this type of comment on national tv.. It's about time.. More to come??? I hope.
posted by thedoctorpants at 9:36 AM on September 7, 2005


Hell yes.
posted by blendor at 9:42 AM on September 7, 2005


thedoctorpants...no worries. I didn't know it was your first FPP. But this would have been better added to one of the other Katrina threads.
And qwip, it was a touch of exasperation, not anger. We've had 80+ Katrina FPPs and now we are served an op-ed. I flagged it and it's still here - no problem. I don't much like making a MeTa callout fuss of these things. It's definitely not worth it on this occasion.

And RealCountryMusic may otherwise regard me as a shmuck and although I won't pretend to toe any American political party line, mentioning "pro-Bush" and my name in the same sentence is not only offensive in so far as my posting history to this site would indicate, it smacks of a reactionary dismissiveness that's totally uncalled for. Read what I wrote. I hope the bulk of the left don't engage in such intellectually lazy myopia or the open and shut case RealCountryMusic sees against the Bush administration will be a breeze for Rove et al to sidestep.
posted by peacay at 10:23 AM on September 7, 2005


And speaking of the "blame game" comments (thanks for the reminder deanc) coming from the White House spin machine, who the hell thinks this is a game anyway?
Those cretins are to blame and they damn well need to accept that. It may be a game to the "eating cake and playing guitar" crowd but to patriotic Americans this is damn deadly serious. And I mean deadly, as in thousands of corpses.
posted by nofundy at 10:36 AM on September 7, 2005


is this kind of thing unusual on American TV?

Certainly ever since 9/11. But around '98 or so the political media got sidetracked into investigating blowjobs. A lot of the current crop of "newsreaders" (surely a more accurate term) got their start then, and it shows.

And a former sportscaster shall lead them

I remember watching the live coverage on NBC sports of the '96 Olympic bombing. It was late at night, so all they had in the booth were the second-string sports anchors. They were tremendous -- they didn't have the polspeak, they didn't have the bouffant anchorisms, they didn't have the need to grandstand. They only felt comfortable reporting the facts, and we got a lot of that. This state of affairs lasted about an hour, when Brokaw showed up and went on air (standing outside somewhere around Centennial Park) with only the sketchiest information at his fingertips. The information that I began receiving for the effort of watching declined dramatically, even as Brokaw's Nebraska accent and concerned half-smile brought "humanity" to the broadcast. It was stunning.

I've never forgotten it.
posted by dhartung at 10:37 AM on September 7, 2005


Uh, I meant to write that in sports journalism that someone trying to claim , "we shouldn't be playing the 'blame game' over who lost last night's game" would be laughed at.

But you probably figured that out.
posted by deanc at 10:45 AM on September 7, 2005


At a news conference, Pelosi, D-Calif., said Bush's choice for head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency had 'absolutely no credentials.'

She related that she had urged Bush at the White House on Tuesday to fire Michael Brown.

'He said 'Why would I do that?'' Pelosi said.

''I said because of all that went wrong, of all that didn't go right last week.' And he said 'What didn't go right?''

'Oblivious, in denial, dangerous,' she added.
NYT: Democrats Assail White House on Katrina Effort
posted by muckster at 11:22 AM on September 7, 2005


realcountrymusic writes "Peacay, the pro-Bush bluster doesn't cut it on this one."

Um, have you actually ever read anything peacay has written? You might start with his first comment in this thread, which is neither pro-Bush nor bluster.
posted by OmieWise at 11:43 AM on September 7, 2005


Now is not the time to play the "Blame Game" muckster. :-) Thanks for the link.
Pelosi must hate America's freedom and liberty and democracy and apple pie to be talking about our Dear Leader like that. I bet she's one of them damn liberals from France or something!
posted by nofundy at 11:48 AM on September 7, 2005


Great post.
posted by digaman at 12:16 PM on September 7, 2005


'Oblivious, in denial, dangerous,' she added.

That sums it up nicely. I'm amazed someone in her position had the guts to say it.
posted by homunculus at 12:21 PM on September 7, 2005


Well, as long as we're pushing op-eds... I almost hate to do it, but Friedman's got one.
"If the Bush-Cheney team seemed to be the right guys to deal with Osama, they seem exactly the wrong guys to deal with Katrina - and all the rot and misplaced priorities it's exposed here at home.

These are people so much better at inflicting pain than feeling it, so much better at taking things apart than putting them together, so much better at defending "intelligent design" as a theology than practicing it as a policy."
Ouch.
posted by weston at 12:30 PM on September 7, 2005


OK. That link didn't come out right... should be: Osama and Katrina.
posted by weston at 12:31 PM on September 7, 2005


That article mentions a plan to give every adult evacuee a debit card with $2000 on it.

That's good -- but I hope that the card distribution will be accompanied by a tutorial on how to best use it; for instance, on a security and first-month for an apartment.

Some of the people may rarely have that much money at once to dispose of, and the experience of having lost all personal possessions and been deprived for days of basic necessities may trigger a spending urge. I know it would in me. I would probably need a pep talk to encourage me not to become parted from the money too easily.
posted by Miko at 12:33 PM on September 7, 2005


"If the Bush-Cheney team seemed to be the right guys to deal with Osama"

"I don't know where bin Laden is. I have no idea and really don't care. It's not that important. It's not our priority." -- G.W. Bush, 3/13/02

Somebody tell me that if Gore had been elected in 2000 and ended up saying that 6 months after 9/11 the wingnuts wouldn't have strung him up by his balls.

But like most things coming out of this administration, I guess it just goes into the cognitive dissonance file if you are a partisan republican.

I posted the following on another thread, but I'll repeat it:

The reference to Churchill was great. IIRC this was from 1936-37; Churchill was in Parliament debate, and at the time was in strident opposition to the pacifist/appeasement current of the entire British society. The debate was about Britain's reaction to the news that the Luftwaffe expansion was outstripping the RAF's efforts, and Churchill rightly teed off on the government's (I believe it was the PM, Baldwin) argument that they had not received a mandate from the people to begin spending money on defense.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 12:56 PM on September 7, 2005


That article mentions a plan to give every adult evacuee a debit card with $2000 on it.

That's good -- but I hope that the card distribution will be accompanied by a tutorial on how to best use it; for instance, on a security and first-month for an apartment.


Right, it's also a sop and a drop in the bucket, 2k is not going to cut it. Not that it isn't great and all, but it is going to be a textbook example of why poverty is self-reinforcing.

On topic, It's nice that the media is finding it's huevos after 5 years, but I am already getting that sinking feeling, like the sound of all these media people patting themselves on the back is going to drown out the cries for help.
posted by Divine_Wino at 1:36 PM on September 7, 2005


Divine: funny thing is IMV it's an economic fact that regular subsidies to the poor just drive up the rents they pay.

While food may be the #1 human need, supply and demand for it is somewhat elastic; with shelter, on the other hand, supply is fixed and demand, for most people, is rather inelastic (about the scope, if not quality, of basic minimums).

This results in any regular, monthly aid to the poor eventually ending up, indirectly, in their landlords' (or lenders') pockets, in areas where housing is not in superabundance (and there is always price competition to "move up" where there is equilibrium between supply and demand).

(the wider the subsidy, the more pronounced this effect is; I don't think it's controversial to argue that the mortgage interest deduction gives about a 20% boost to all home valuations).
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 2:02 PM on September 7, 2005


Here's a clip of Pelosi. And here's one from last night's Daily Show.
posted by homunculus at 2:17 PM on September 7, 2005


Yup and food costs more in ghetto supermarkets, the kind people walk to. I am totally into the "market" but it is not nearly close to being a good mechanism for social support and humanitarianism.
posted by Divine_Wino at 2:19 PM on September 7, 2005


I was bummed when Olbermann spread his wings and flew away from ESPN but now I'm glad. He's got the brains, pace and balls to be an excellent journalist and this piece of his was well written and articulate.

It demonstrates just how badly FEMA failed and continues to fail. That these "leaders" were elected because they shouted loudly that they could protect us and they could not. That Dick Cheney promised that Kerry/Edwards would wind up with people dead. He's merely reminding the nation that these are the same people who didn't lead at all last week.

Excellent essay and Olbermann's just been added to my Bloglines subscriptions.
posted by fenriq at 3:24 PM on September 7, 2005


olbermann is probably the best there is on cable. his delivery is spot on plus he's got a brain.
posted by brandz at 7:12 PM on September 7, 2005


Clevershark and SamIam, I am not going to criticize your ways of snapping off pointless one-liners, but it would be a great favor to me if you would cross-post all of your player hating to metaesquirefilter.com. Thanks a bunch.
posted by esquire at 7:47 PM on September 7, 2005


For those of you without cable, you can watch Olbermann on WDSU-TV as they stream MSNBC through the overnight, at midnight Eastern Time.
posted by calwatch at 10:05 PM on September 7, 2005


Olbermann's Time Line
posted by homunculus at 11:01 PM on September 7, 2005


Possesses six lumbar vertebrae instead of the usual five.

Was raised Unitarian.

New York Yankees second baseman Chuck Knoblauch accidentally hit Keith's mother in the head, during a botched play at Yankee Stadium in 1998.
posted by Relay at 11:38 PM on September 7, 2005


I'm late returning to this thread as I am traveling, but whatever I said about Peacay's comment being "pro-Bush bluster" was obviously wrong. I may have confused it with another post, but can't figure it out now.

That said, I was amazed to receive an incredibly vitriolic private email from Peacay after that very mild snark accusing me of "slander." Sheesh.
posted by realcountrymusic at 2:12 PM on September 8, 2005


Vitrioloic!? Heh.
I also said "slandering my political position".
Do you mischaracterize and misread often?
posted by peacay at 5:11 PM on September 8, 2005


Yeah, vitriolic. What's the distinction between "slandering" a "political position" and "slandering" a person, except that the former is poor grammar? Meh.
posted by realcountrymusic at 10:41 PM on September 8, 2005


Grammar shot aside I'll be sure not to accuse you of being pro-Bush without some justification.
posted by peacay at 11:15 PM on September 8, 2005


Okay, peace. I apologize for taking you and your remarks out of context. I find myself unrelentingly upset about the situation on the Gulf Coast and it's coloring my every thought. I am pro-Bush, you know. I am a strong supporter of his candidacy for a criminal indictment or ten.
posted by realcountrymusic at 10:40 AM on September 9, 2005


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