The 47-year-old broadcaster’s “special comments” are not a regular feature on “Countdown With Keith Olbermann,” the dramatically intoned, fast-paced mÃ©lange of politics and pop culture that he has anchored since 2003 and that recently emerged as MSNBC’s top-rated show. (The newscast airs at 5 p.m. on the West Coast, with a repeat at 9 p.m.)
But Olbermann’s occasional soliloquies — typically a no-holds-barred excoriation of the Bush administration — have dramatically elevated his profile in the last several months, especially in the liberal blogosphere, and helped drive up the ratings for the third-place cable news network.
The longtime sportscaster, who doesn’t vote and eschews any political identity — “I may be a Whig, possibly a Free-Soiler,” he quipped — has nevertheless become an unexpected folk hero for the frustrated left. One woman approached him in a New York restaurant recently and burst into tears as she thanked him.
I think “wigging out” and “definately freely soiling the airwaves” might be a little more on-the-mark description of KO. Continuing:
“People just think, ‘He speaks for me,’ ” said Jane Hamsher, a Mill Valley, Calif., author who runs a liberal blog at firedoglake.com. “There was no resonance within the media for their perspective, and suddenly Keith came on the scene and gave voice to these long-simmering feelings of disgust with the war.”
Olbermann said he never set out to court disaffected liberals [read: Nutroots –ST].
“But there’s a time when what you’re covering ceases to look like news and begins to look like history,” he said. “And you say, well, it doesn’t matter how people might brand me or respond to this — I feel as if something very important is not being said.”
Oh my! I mean, saying things like “[Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace is a] monkey posing as a newscaster” was definitely one of those “important things” that needed to be said, that nobody was saying – until KO came along. Just how WAS the world able to function and thrive without KO’s pearls of wisdom for so long?? (Sorry, there’s no foaming-at-the-mouth Yahoo emoticon to use here …)
- As expected, Olbermann defends Webb’s smut books, but a year ago he slammed a similar type book of Scooter Libby’s
- Keith Olbermann: GWB is the greatest threat to our country
- Olbermann solidifies his standing with the Nutroots, calls for Bush impeachment
- Evening moonbat roundup (Olbermann compares Bush to Hitler and Neville Chamberlain)
- Keith Olbermann is the sexiest newscaster?