Ed Driscoll

Boob Bait For The Bobos

With “Olbermann’s Sinking Ship”, the New York Post’s Page Six has a little sport with America’s warmest, friendliest “newsman”:

Has the countdown begun for the end of “Countdown with Keith Olbermann?” With his ratings in free-fall, and his hateful histrionics reaching new highs, even Olbermann’s former supporters on the left are tuning out. Bloggers at the Los Angeles Times and National Public Radio noted the uberdork’s 44 percent drop in listeners ages 25-54 from January 2009 to last month. “Olbermann’s showboat is sinking,” one LA Times blogger noted. “Listing in you-know-which direction.” Jon Stewart ridiculed him on “The Daily Show” for calling Massachusetts Senator-elect Scott Brown a “racist.” “There are creeping indications that the world may not have quite as much need of — or patience for — Olbermann and his shtick as it once did,” Jeff Bercovici wrote on DailyFinance.com. Olbermann struck back at Bercovici, naming him as one of the “Worst People in the World” and mischaracterizing the Web site as “right-wing.”

Bercovici wrote (and we thank him for mentioning us):

When I wrote about signs that the tide is turning against MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann, I suspected it might land me a place on his “Worst Person in the World” list, the segment he uses for most of his score-settling. What I didn’t anticipate was that he’d tell an outright lie about me and the organization I work for.

On Tuesday night’s Countdown, Olbermann, claiming he wanted to “clear up” misperceptions about his show’s ratings, called DailyFinance a “right-wing site” and lumped us in with Glenn Beck and the National Review.

Now, I’m something of an old-school journalist in that I don’t believe in broadcasting my politics in public. I guess I’m doing a decent job of keeping them under wraps if Olbermann can call me a right-winger while actual right-wingers like Michelle Malkin and Ed Driscoll seem to believe I’m a flaming liberal.

If anyone were to take my voting record and those of my co-workers and put them all online, my hunch is it would pretty quickly lay bare the falsity of the claim that DailyFinance constitutes some kind of conservative organ. But I don’t know for sure. We’re a business-news site. We don’t talk about party politics all that much.

“I don’t know for sure”? It’s always frustrating when a journalist plays coy about his ideology, but at least, as Bercovici wrote, he’s in the business news department, not politics. (Not that two haven’t increasingly overlapped since the days of FDR, of course.) Let’s review Ace’s thoughts on the topic from a few years ago when the Washington Post attempted a similar claim:

Liberal media outfits do loves them their unhinged-leftist hate-mail. [Or in this case, an unhinged anchorguy–Ed] Because they use it again and again as proof positive that they must be reporting straight down the middle to incur so much wrath from the left.Although [Allahpundit] points out the speciousness (and convenience) of that claim, let’s also note that most of the liberal media’s criticism on the right comes from mainstream Republicans representing the great mass of right-leaning thought, whereas those who think the WaPo is a part of the Vast Right Wing Noise Machine are unabashed, unhinged lefties, “undecided” voters only the sense they’re undecided between Ralph Nader and Hugo Chavez.

Which means that the criticism of the paper comes from the hard left and center-right, which means, in turn, the paper is somewhere in between. And what is in between center-right and hard left? Ah yes: establishment liberal. Which is what everyone who’s not batsh*t crazy understands the WaPo is, its support of the Iraq War notwithstanding, and its quite-praiseworthy attempts towards true political balance notwithstanding. Yes, the WaPo is less blatantly agenda-driven than the NYT, but it is still, on the whole, establishment liberal, and its reporting reflects that deep institutional bias.

And I think it’s fair to say, based on Bercovici’s writing quoted above and in his article the same basic mindset applies — he’s to the left of myself, more to the left of Michelle, but certainly to the right of Olbermann.

Or at least Olbermann’s audience. I have no idea how much of their rantings Keith has internalized, and how much is Boob Bait for the Bobos, to mash-up Pat Moynihan and David Brooks.

Oh, and speaking of NBC, we’ve long known what’s in the ideological Kool-Aid there — but who knew what was in the cafeteria?!

You stay classy, Peacock network. (H/T to the Rhetorican for that last item on the NBC commissary.)

Update: Michelle Malkin on the double-standards at play with the above photo; and related thoughts from Sonja Schmidt at PJTV: “Off Color: Democrats Misspeak But Republicans Are Racist.”