White House

The Obama Administration Slams MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann

Last updated on August 10th, 2014 at 05:01 pm

At his press briefing today Obama Press Secretary Robert Gibbs took a not so thinly veiled shot at MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann and other pundits on the Left who are complaining about Obama’s speech last night. Gibbs said of cable TV, “I don’t actually think that is where all of real America lives.”

According to Sam Stein over at Huffington Post, Gibbs was asked about the criticism of Obama from cable pundits on the Left, and he replied, “I appreciate the hand on the pulse of America by those who live on cable TV. I don’t actually think that is where all of real America lives.” Gibbs then made reference to the fact that if most of the pundit class, like Olbermann is often wrong, “I said this before, I will reiterate it. If the president had decided to run for president based off what the pundits were saying in the December of 2006 and January of 2007, he would be in the Senate.”

Here is Olbermann’s criticism from Countdown last night:

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Olbermann nightly rants have been especially irritating because they have been most often based on emotion, not facts. On May 24, Olbermann, while on one of his nightly Obama and the oil spill rants, illegally called for Obama to deploy the Navy to fix the spill. Of course, Obama doesn’t have the legal authority to deploy the Navy, and the question of what could the Navy do to fix the leak was completely ignored by Olbermann.

Olbermann took to his Twitter account to defend his criticism, and he managed to take credit for health care reform, “I believe in him and in his presidency and he has frequently achieved success (in health care reform, particularly) by doing that for which I criticized him. I hope that is again the case now because the Gulf Speech was not up to his standards nor did it express his mastery of policy. And if you will stop watching because I said this, I’ll be very sorry, but you will have been watching for the wrong reason. I am not, have not been, and will not be, any politician’s, nor any president’s, spokesman.”

This is complete bullshit on Olbermann’s part. Obama and the Democrats did not do what Olbermann said on healthcare. On his December 16, 2009 program he told Democrats to kill the healthcare bill. Olbermann does not represent independents he represents that group of people who are too cowardly on the left to call themselves liberals so they have warped the term progressive to suit them. They are a group of people who think they are behaving independently when they echo Republican talking points. They are like children pouting because Obama won’t do exactly what they want, when they want.

The other great piece of Olbermann “genius” was his recent call for Obama to place BP into receivership. Once again how the President of the United States would place a foreign corporation into receivership is something that Olbermann probably never considered, and contrary to what his apologist fans like to say, Keith never bothered to address or correct these mistakes.

I think the White House needs to grow a thicker skin, but Olbermann’s whining last night was so out of place and over the top that he deserves criticism. Olbermann seemed to have only listened to the first five minutes of the address, and then decided that he hated it. What Olbermann practices isn’t journalism, it is bias as entertainment, and it is no different from what they sell across the street at Fox News.

Keith Olbermann has found his niche as being comfort food for certain type of closed minded progressive who wants their beliefs affirmed on a nightly basis. His program is newstainment, and while it is fun, and it is fun, he should not be taken seriously, until he demonstrates a basic understanding of policy. Personally, I’ll take Rachel Maddow’s more intelligent program any day over Olbermann’s over the top wall climbing circus act.

The White House really needs to grow up and stop caring about what they say in the vacuum of cable news. Even if they are wrong most of the time pundits like Olbermann will continue to entertain and opine. I am really uncomfortable with Gibbs’ real America reference as anytime a Palin phrase is invoked it usually means trouble. Olbermann has a right to say what he wants. If he disagrees with the administration that does not make him any less of an American even if he has no idea what he is talking about.

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Jason Easley

Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements. Awards and  Professional Memberships Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association

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