I’m taking entirely too much pleasure in hearing today that Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann have been been spanked by MSNBC for their anchoring of the national political conventions in the last couple of weeks. The FoxNews people were positively gloating over it. (Kudos to CNN for not mentioning it, at least not while I was watching.) And for those three people who still haven’t heard about the kerfuffle, the Washington Post explained it at length.
The coverage was amusing at first, although the story was supposed to be the DNC and RNC, not the goobers covering it. Matthews and Olbermann were throwing not-always-off-camera jibes at each other and at their conservative guest panelists, most of whom seemed to be there just as targets for ridicule. I probably mentioned some of this last week when I got so fed up with them and spewed my disgust here.
What I’ve been aware of, and am tacky enough to mention now, is that after Tim Russert’s death, NBC decided to wait until after the election to choose a “successor,” for want of a better word. They brought Tom Brokaw out of semi-retirement to be their primary news guy until then. I’ve no problem with that. I’ve always liked Brokaw. In the meantime, all the other news anchors at NBC know they are in an undeclared contest to be the new top dog.
It is, therefore, a particularly bad time for Mathews and Olbermann to have incurred the wrath of the powers that be. Olbermann was a sportscaster not so long ago, and nobody seems aware that sportscasting doesn’t become newscasting just by changing the label. He’s an abrasive individual who should have stayed in sports. Matthews was my tentative choice before the conventions, although his voice often irritates me. Now, I’ll have to overlook more than just his voice.
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As the first edition of “The Rachel Maddow Show” kicks off on MSNBC, I just want to say I’ve become a big fan of Rachel Maddow this summer and am delighted the network was smart enough to give her her own show. Way to go, Rachel!