“No Man’s life liberty or property is safe while the legislature is in session”.

- attributed to NY State Judge Gideon Tucker

Monday, January 31, 2011

Keith Olbermann's Departure

Bret Stephens wrote a refreshing editorial in the Wall Street Journal last week commenting on MSNBC's Keith Olbermann's imminent departure. Like me, Stephens expressed support for explicit political purity in media.

Stephens wrote of Olbermann,

"He put MSNBC on the map. He pushed CNN into third place. He earned his $30 million contract.

Nor was Mr. Olbermann only good for capitalism. For a long time, the dominant mode of liberal argument was to ironize, or tut-tut, or dissemble, or manipulate the terms of discourse, or stack the deck in debates that are supposed to be balanced. The "Countdown" host did away with the old-fashioned liberal snigger and replaced it with a full-frontal snarl.

Put simply, Mr. Olbermann had a genuine faith in populism, something liberals more often preach than practice."

Contrary to the incumbent mentality which, at the FCC, now seeks to mandate balance within either networks or programs- I'm not sure which- I agree with Stephens in preferring that programs simply espouse what they wish, and let consumers choose.

I don't personally find Olbermann's views sensible nor attractive. Nor am I fond of his manner, what little I've seen of it. But I do think it's best to let him have whatever pulpit the market will offer, on mutually-agreeable terms.

He'll probably land somewhere with his trademark narrow-minded, wrong-headed liberalism. But, so be it. Better he gives an unvarnished view of ultra-liberal zaniness and insensibility than that he be muzzled or governmentally 'balanced.'

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