Subtitle: Or is it an Excuse as Comcast gets Ready to Come on Board?
Late Friday afternoon, November 5 2010, CNN broke the news that Keith Olbermann had been suspended indefinitely without pay for making three political contributions without the “approval” of MSNBC president Phil Griffin. However by today, November 7, 2010 that is not holding water and the backlash is something Comcast, GE, and MSNBC probably never imagined.
If you want a story to die, you release it on Friday afternoon when no one will notice and then it dies over the weekend. Politicians do this all of the time, but this time the Keith Olbermann dispute is gaining steam and putting Griffin in a no-win situation, or as much of that kind of situation you can put a rich dude with a title in.
I watched Rachael Maddow on Friday night to hear the “most” that MSNBC is going to allow to be said on their network… “Allowed”??? Yes they have the final say in what will be on their network, like it or hit the door.
As Thomas Jefferson once said; “[A despotic] government always [keeps] a kind of standing army of news writers who, without any regard to truth or to what should be like truth, [invent] and put into the papers whatever might serve the ministers. This suffices with the mass of the people who have no means of distinguishing the false from the true.” Jefferson also had confidence which today rests with our computers and Google of saying; “I am persuaded that the good sense of the people will always be found to be the best army. They may be led astray for a moment, but will soon correct themselves. The people are the only censors of their governors, and even their errors will tend to keep these to the true principles of their institution.”
After that what did I do? I went to my favorite of “let Google be your friend” and began to hunt for my truth. What I found out there is amazing, confusing and should scare all of us. First Olbermann was suspended for giving political contributions without permissions from his overlords. By today it is because he would not apologize on the air, not that any of us would know why he was doing that, nor would we care. Griffin might be changing to this because over the weekend it is getting more difficult for Griffin to find employees that have not given as in no host to take over for Keith on Monday, so the story has again changed to the apology angle.
Joe Scarborough of “Morning Joe” with nutso co-host, Mika Brzezinski, (I say nutso because she is), and pundit Pat Buchanan, who guarantees a channel change in our home when he begins to spew his hate on air. Besides what Buchanan has given while being on MSNBC it was found that WAY back in 2006, Scarborough had given the maximum $4,200 contribution to the Oregon congressional race of close friend Derrick Kitts. On Friday MNSBC spokesman Jeremy Gaines put out a statement that said; “That contribution was made in accordance with (network) policy. Joe sought permission in advance. Since 2007 we have recommitted ourselves to following these important standards.”
That lasted about four hours before it was uncovered by POLITICO, the same organization that reported the Olbermann donations; found that statement was also FALSE. Scarborough made a $5,000 contribution in April 2010 to Alabama state legislative candidate John Merrill, who said the two have been close friends since they attended the University of Alabama together. Merrill had no real Democratic opponent.” So of course he needed Joe’s contribution, Joe tell us it anit’ so? That caused nutso Mika Brzezinski to give an interview to POLITICO, not something anyone is doing that works for MSNBC on behalf of Olbermann by the way. Mika basically said, Joe this is MY JOB, throw you long time friend under the bus, tell them he LIED. Her exact quote was in part; “That contribution should have been in the name of Scarborough’s wife, Susan Scarborough. The Scarboroughs expect John Merrill will amend his campaign report to accurately reflect that reality. If he does not, I will recommend they file an ethics complaint against him.” Brzezinski also challenged Merrill’s recollection of having brought Scarborough to Tuscaloosa for an August 2009 fundraiser for the county Republican Party, which Merrill said “was unbelievably successful. We raised a ton of money that we used to help local candidates.” Mika jumped on that to spin it as; “That event was billed as a tribute to Gov. Bob Riley on his retirement from politics, any suggestion that Joe Scarborough went to the University event to raise money for a political party is false. Sadly, many politicians try to elevate their standing by exaggerating their connection to Joe. This is one of those cases.” Yea Mika like unknown pundits wannabes like you elevate yourself in all of this.
That said it appears that Mika has the power to make a politician change his “story”, go figure Contrary to a VERY different interview with POLITICO earlier on Friday, I suggest you read that interview at POLITICO. Mika (cough cough seems to think she has the power she has claimed) cause on Friday evening, Merrill issued a chastened statement to POLITICO asserting that the $5,000 donation — his biggest individual donation of the campaign — was “from Susan Scarborough … I am very appreciative of her support.”
Mika shut up and sit down. We know your ratings are in the crapper but frankly I liked you better when you showed up at work, with curlers in your hair, very little make-up and chomping your breakfast on camera. I still turned you off though and even if by accident you and Morning Joe are on my television in the early morning hours by accident, WELL let’s just say thank God for quick remote controls. That said I would be doing this of you so think before you are fast to throw someone else under the bus, you might need support one day.
There is a much bigger story here that is probably closer to the truth, when POLITICO wrote that the decision was made by Steve Burke, a Bush fundraiser, who will be placed at the helm of MSNBC and other NBC companies after the buy-out of NBC Universal. Burke has not made any secret it appears of not liking Olbermann, and in previous interviews when asked about Olbermann’s style of reporting said to ask him again in six to twelve months. Perhaps this is a preview?
POLITICO corrected that error with the following: “UPDATED: We have been notified that Comcast has not yet officially taken over MSNBC/NBC Universal. Although Comcast has tentatively finalized a deal to purchase a majority stake in NBC, Comcast awaits final approval of the takeover from the Justice Department and from the Federal Communications Commission. A statement from Comcast reads: “The joint venture between Comcast and GE has not yet received regulatory approval. Comcast is not in any way involved with decisions made currently by NBC News.” However, once Comcast gains final approval from federal regulators to move forward, Comcast COO Steve Burke, a Bush fundraiser, will be placed at the helm of MSNBC and other NBC companies. Our original post inaccurately asserted that Comcast’s Burke was involved in the decision to fire Olbermann. We apologize for the error”.
All of this said and done what causes me the most alarm and this fiasco has I hope brought to the forefront for a lot of us is that Comcast has a pending deal with NBC Universal to buy them for $80 billion, that is right BILLION, dollars and has been moving on getting permission to do that with the Justice Department and the FCC. The why they need permission is what shocked me. With the purchase of NBC Universal Comcast will control 25% of what all of us see on TV. Let that sink in they will control ONE-QUARTER of what is available for every watcher of television. Now their deal is a sure thing to go through because they bought the votes with $32 million dollars in contributions to the best politicians for sale out there.
Twenty, , public interest, industry and consumer groups have announced a coalition to oppose the proposed merger between Comcast and NBC Universal, citing its potential harm on competition and consumer choice. “As the nation’s largest cable company, the largest Internet service provider, the NBC broadcast networks, owner of the local NBC and Telemundo stations in some of the nation’s largest media markets, owner of dozens of national, regional and local news, entertainment and sports cable networks, and owner or part-owner of some of the most heavily visited Web sites on the Internet, the merged entity will exert a degree of power unknown in our nation’s media history,” the coalition’s letter said. “That degree of concentrated power is fundamentally threatening to the public interest. Before allowing such a sea-change to take place, these impacts must be fully studied and understood – and the threats must be mitigated through energetic applications of the government’s regulatory authority.”
As a side note but one to pay attention to is Comcast is anti net neutrality as in they want you to pay to find sites like ours or block small sites altogether and to slow down both the ability to get to sites. , savetheinternet.com explains that companies like Comcast want “to be Internet gatekeepers, deciding which Web sites go fast or slow and which won’t load at all. They want to tax content providers to guarantee speedy delivery of their data. — while slowing down or blocking services offered by their competitors. These companies have a new vision for the Internet. Instead of a level playing field, they want to reserve express lanes for their own content and services — or those of big corporations that can afford the steep tolls — and leave the rest of us on a winding dirt road.”
In closing I want to quote two more great insights to all of this:
Russell Simmons’ op-ed at the Huffington Post.com in saying not only will he pay those pesky three contributions made by Keith but says what many of us feel. “Keith Olbermann has given voice to the voiceless, sanity to the madness, truth where lies are now a daily part of our political discourse. … If he goes we lose the Edward Murrow of our generation, the voice that spits truth to power and vested interests.”
Secondly another quote by Jefferson; “The basis of our governments being the opinion of the people, the very first object should be to keep that right; and were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter…”
I also want to say that Olbermann puts his money and time in what he believes. When he saw Free Clinics in action in poor areas he took notice. He raised all of our awareness and promoted and help fund much larger Free Clinics to those in need. So for what everyone else is doing he is now punished and perhaps will not return to Count Down, if he does then whether on the right or left we all lose.
So with this being Rose Speaks.com first ever political or save anyone editorial here are the places you can go to make sure whether you love or hate Keith Olbrmann that his voice not be silenced for if he is silenced for MSNBC to become a baby “Fox” then who is next and when it is us who will be left to speak up?
http://act.boldprogressives.org/sign/petition_olbermann Act Bold Progressives Petition to get Keith back on the air.
Contact NBC directly at 1-212-664-4444, you can also email Phil Griffin at email@example.com Phil Griffin’s boss: firstname.lastname@example.org
Face Book of Keep Keith Olbermann on the Air http://www.facebook.com/pages/Keep-Keith-Olbermann-On-msnbc/13888170949682 and Face Book Reinstate Keith Olbermann http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1019830063#!/pages/Reinstate-Keith-Olbermann/163923706964416
Yes I have joined all of the efforts and in disclosure I gave to Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign a very small amount, but sometimes those small amounts or the lone voice can get traction and help.
Here is a sample you can send when signing the Petition and is what I added to my signature: “Friday, November 05, 2010 This is the last night for me to watch MSNBC until Keith is back. Only watched tonight to hear what Rachel Maddow had to say. GOOD BYE Mmmmmmmm where will your advertisers go, perhaps CNN where your viewers will go?”
Yes I love Rachel and think I would like Lawrence O’Donnald but sometimes you just have to watch reruns so MSNBC is hurt in the only way that matters, viewers which equal advertising dollars. Keep the heat of MSNBC and say, “you can’t hide something this unfair by saying it late on Friday afternoon, we are smarter than that”.
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November 7, 2010
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