One day after the approval of the Comcast/NBC merger. Countdown With Keith Olberman has been cancelled on MSNBC.
Details are conflicting with some sources saying that Olberman was fired and some saying that he quit. But in the final broadcast that happened without warning last night Olberman stated that he was told “this is going to be the last edition of your show” Catching viewers and fellow MSNBC commentators by surprise.
Last night after Olbermans announcement Rachel Maddow spoke out on the split on “Real Time with Bill Maher.” Maddow said “Keith announced at the end of his show tonight that he and the company made a mutual decision that ‘Countdown’ is done.”
“Well, that’s always bullshit,” said Maher.
And I tend to agree
It is well known that both Comcast chief Brian Roberts and NBCU chief Steve Burke have donated heavily to the Republican party with Burke more recently donating money to a few Democrats as well as heavily to Republicans. Roberts was a co-chairman of the host committee at the 2000 Republican Convention while Burke raised at least $200,000 for George W Bush’s re-election campaign
Comcast is an intrinsically conservative corporation, it’s not overly friendly to boat-rockers like Olbermann. In fact, one such individual, a former employee named Barry Nolan, sued Comcast last year, saying the cable operator fired him in order to protect its relationship with News Corp., which owns the Fox News Channel. Nolan had publicly protested an award given to Bill O’Reilly, Fox News’s biggest star. Olbermann has also frequently feuded with O’Reilly, and even media critic Dan Kennedy predicted last year, “Keith Olbermann may prove to be Barry Nolan.”
If corporations control government through buying candidates and corporations control news through buying media outlets we are all so thoroughly screwed.
Best of luck Keith Olberman and thank you for shooting straight and telling it like it was.