Were we supposed to be surprised that MSNBC political commentator Keith Olbermann donated money to three Democratic candidates in the 2010 mid-term elections?
NBC News said Olbermann violated their ethics policy by making political donations. He was suspended “indefinitely” without pay.
NBC News defines “indefinitely” as two days. Olbermann returns to his show, Countdown, Tuesday night.
It was a silly suspension.
Why he was suspended is something that can be debated until the cows come home. It’s not like we don’t know which way Olbermann leans by watching his show. We know by watching the evening cable news channels that Olbermann wants liberals elected and Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity wants conservatives elected.
Olbermann is not a “hard news” reporter for MSNBC; therefore he is not required to maintain his neutrality when commentating about the news. He shouldn’t be required to keep his checkbook closed, either.
Olbermann is not a reporter just as his competitor on Fox News, Bill O’Reilly, is not a reporter. They are commentators. Some say they are just entertainers. They give their opinions. As consumers of their opinions, we listen to them and make our decisions about the issue. When they go too far or we disagree with them, we switch channels. That is still our choice in America.
It’s not like we don’t know that the evening show line-up on MSNBC leans to the left just as the evening line-up on Fox News leans to the right.
So Olbermann was off the air for two days. He returns tonight. He should get a bump in his ratings. Olbermann’s ratings and those of MSNBC could use a bump.
America needs people like Keith Olbermann just as we need people like Sean Hannity. The truth and the facts are somewhere in the middle …just like they have always been.