Olbermann is Right; They Should Have Cut Murphy Off

28Aug08

MSNBC has gone absolutely insane recently. Anti-First Daughter Prostitution analyst David Shuster recently got into quite the conflict with former Republican congressman and fellow MSNBC host Joe Scarborough. Scarborough is independent on many of his positions, but clearly the shift to the left for MSNBC, which will be complete with Rachel Maddow taking over for the incompetent and irritable Dan Abrams. So when moments like Keith Olbermann’s pseudo-confrontation of Republican operative Mike Murphy happen, one must wonder whether this is a) a ratings stunt for a network currently struggling to establish relevance; b) a strong-willed move for truth in journalism on Olbermann’s part; or c) signs of the growing left-leaning bias of MSNBC.

I really don’t think Olbermann’s move was a ratings stunt. MSNBC has had enough of those accidentally; there’s no reason to stage one. Besides, it seems that Olbermann wasn’t even fully aware his mic was on.

It could be a sign of the left leaning tendencies of MSNBC. Certainly, Olbermann has become the face of MSNBC, much to the chagrin of Matthews and Shuster, but also Fox News, as O’Reilly has a competent asshole to face off against.

But is it acceptable in journalism, regardless of one’s obvious biases, to just let someone go on spreading lies? Murphy was arguing that Obama’s policies were shifting towards “Hillary Clinton’s and John McCain’s.” Firstly, Hillary Clinton and John McCain are very different on foreign policy; suggesting otherwise is merely an attempt by Republicans to try to raid ex-Clintonistas.

(By the way, it’ll be fun to watch Republicans continue that line of attack after two amazing performances by the Clintons; Bill’s was vintage Bill, the man who won the presidency twice, not the one who lost it for his wife. Hillary’s speech gave hints to what a juggernaut a properly managed Clinton campaign could have been.)

Secondly, the truth is Obama has had more influence on our foreign policy over the last five months that Obama. All of sudden, the Bush administration has decided to talk with Iran, after calling it appeasement. Our restrained response to Russia’s invasion of Georgia is also due to Obama’s recognition that America’s military is far too strained for another engagement. Hillary Clinton started turning on NAFTA after she saw Obama’s popular opposition to it.

One way or another, Olbermann tried to stop lies from getting on the air; is that partisan or good broadcast journalism?

Video of the incident can be found here

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2 Responses to “Olbermann is Right; They Should Have Cut Murphy Off”

  1. It’s partisan because we have a long track record of Keith doing the same.

  2. 2 poliology

    I don’t doubt that…the question I guess I’m getting at is, what happens if the truth, or the right thing to do, happens to be partisan?


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