Keith Olbermann has finally emerged from the fallout shelter he has been hiding in since he was “suspended indefinitely without pay” last week.
And he’s pissed.
In a “STATEMENT TO THE VIEWERS OF COUNTDOWN,” Olbermann thanks his fans and pundits for supporting him. And he implicitly blasts the network suits who suspended him for violating an “inconsistently enforced” rule that he knew nothing about.
As we noted last week, MSNBC still has some explaining to do about why the rule that cost Olbermann a few days of pay even exists.
Specifically, why does it make MSNBC better than FOX News because all political donations by MSNBC staffers are “approved by management”? Wouldn’t it just be better if donations were either 1) prohibited or 2) disclosed?
Here’s Olbermann’s statement:
A STATEMENT TO THE VIEWERS OF COUNTDOWN
by Keith Olbermann
I want to sincerely thank you for the honour of your extraordinary and
ground-rattling support. Your efforts have been integral to the remedying of
these recent events, and the results should remind us of the power of
individuals spontaneously acting together to correct injustices great or small. I
would also like to acknowledge with respect the many commentators and
reporters, including those with whom my politics do not overlap, for their
I also wish to apologise to you viewers for having precipitated such anxiety
and unnecessary drama. You should know that I mistakenly violated an
inconsistently applied rule – which I previously knew nothing about – that
pertains to the process by which such political contributions are approved by
NBC. Certainly this mistake merited a form of public acknowledgment and/or
internal warning, and an on-air discussion about the merits of limitations on
such campaign contributions by all employees of news organisations. Instead,
after my representative was assured that no suspension was contemplated, I
was suspended without a hearing, and learned of that suspension through the
You should also know that I did not attempt to keep any of these political
contributions secret; I knew they would be known to you and the rest of the
public. I did not make them through a relative, friend, corporation, PAC, or
any other intermediary, and I did not blame them on some kind of convenient
‘mistake’ by their recipients. When a website contacted NBC about one of the
donations, I immediately volunteered that there were in fact three of them; and
contrary to much of the subsequent reporting, I immediately volunteered to
explain all this, on-air and off, in the fashion MSNBC desired.
I genuinely look forward to rejoining you on Countdown on Tuesday, to
begin the repayment of your latest display of support and loyalty – support and
loyalty that is truly mutual.
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