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Pat Sajak says he's profoundly sorry for infecting the country with Keith Olbermann

Handsome all American TV game show host Pat SajakPat Sajak is finally taking full blame for giving Keith Olbermann his start on national television. Historians note that civil discourse has never been the same in American politics.

Sajak clearly feels guilty about launching the liberal lamenter into the nation's thought process like a virus.

On his blog, the good-natured Chicago native and host of "Wheel of Fortune" says he liked the mustachioed Olbermann of the late 1980s, then one of those local hey-there sports guys in LA. Sajak found him entertaining and had Olbermann on his short-lived national talk show several times.

Then, the noted TV barker notes, Olbermann moved on but "tended to wear out his welcome at stations and networks." He landed in several places before squatting over at MSNBC, where he found success ranting against the man who was the nation's president during 9/11.

As everyone knows, however, that success has faded in more recent years, with Olbermann getting his keith kicked nightly by the ratings masters over at Fox News Channel. As one result, Olbermann has raised his hyperbolic volume.

Earlier this month Politico caught Olbermann having donated to three....

Democratic candidates who'd been on his TV show. Olbermann said he had no idea that would possibly be seen as a conflict by his journalism employers at parent NBC.

As a result, MSNBC immediately suspended Olbermann for months as punishment for such poor judgment and unacceptable conflict of interest. Keith's fans launched a petition to bring him back.

OK, MSNBC suspended him for only two shows. It would have been several months if he'd donated to Republicans.

Sajak expresses puzzlement over Olbermann's transition to ranter. "I’m not sure how he morphed into the bitter-sounding, hate-mongering name-caller he’s become," Sajak writes, "but I’m sorry he did. I liked the guy, and he was always a good guest. Maybe it’s just show business and trying to find a place in it and building an audience."
MSNBC's grumpy Keith Olbermann
Then, the host adds: "I do know that to whatever extent the political well has been poisoned, Keith has dumped more than his share of venom into the water. I’d like to think he knows that and maybe even regrets it. I liked the Keith Olbermann of 1989."

Showing the thick skin of a veteran celeb, Olbermann tweeted today that, in fact, he had once been on CNN before the Sajak show, had gone on to great things on other prominent shows before MSNBC and was at one point interviewed by CBS to replace Sajak. 

Olbermann didn't get that job either.

-- Andrew Malcolm

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Comments () | Archives (105)

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At first glance, that thumbnail looked like Olbermann was the dad from American Pie. :)

Clearly this is a one sided article. Bite me Republicans.

Boo Hoo, Andy. Just cause Olberman won't drink the right eing kool-aid is no reason to be such a hater. Keith is om the side of the angels and you and that sap Sajak are obviously just more Limnaugh/Beck/Hannity lovers. This country is heading into the toilet becaise of right-wing scum and the idiot voters who support there insane policies even when they DIRECTLY have a negative impact on there lives. Nothing would satisfy you more than to see this country become even more of a facist Christian hate filled land. Come crying when you get what you desite. An all white, gun carrying mob or religious cretins. In other words, Republicans.

Olberman is a blow-hard douchebag. Period.

He was funny long ago, now he's just a know-nothing Libby RANTER!

What a joke! He'll be FIRED AGAIN!!!

Wouldn't somebody have had to watch Sajak's show for this to be true?

why is this news?

Looks like Pat here is angry that Olbermann gets his nightly show, while Pat plays second fiddle to Vanna White every night.

Don't worry, Pat Sajak; sometimes you never can tell how people will change. If you want to bring out a person's real character, make him famous and put him on a national TV show, I guess.

Does anyone notice that the conservative rants are simple minded empty rhetoric. They no reasons or explanations for their opinions.
Pure inflamatory rhetoric.I like that.I guess the pendulum has swung so far to the right that we're all just thowing rocks and grunting like cave men.
What more can we expect of the party that finds fault with a peaceful, nature loving philosophy that puts peoiple first and big corporate interests second.

Pat Sajak is talking about Keith Olberman being bitter and being a hatemonger is hipocritical at best. Why don't he talk about the hate mongering and race-baiting that goes on with his little way-to-the-right friends. Rush Limbaugh anybody. Pat Sajak is mad because Keith at least has his own show and has lasted.

Keith Olbermann is great! He's poignant, intelligent,funny,and truthful(at least as far as I know).Glen Beck and Sean Hannity are sad and sometimes frightening liers who will shape and and misrepresent the truth for their own right wing agenda.Just like everyone else (including andrew "lil' Puppet" malcolm) at FOX news.And as for Pat Sajak: who the hell cares about Pat Sajak anyway he's a game show host.I used to watch "the wheel" religiously.I guess I'll have to watch Simpsons re-runs at 7:00 to kill time before Jeopardy.Suck an egg Pat!

Pat Sajak is a joke. Of course Olbermann is a showman and part of the overhyped media nonsensical partisan wars, politics for ratings and profit, but at least Olbermann is currently relevant. And notice how Pat conveniently ignores the ugly rantings of the right as per Rush, Hannity, etc. Sajak never went beyond Wheel of Fortune fame no matter how much he tried. No one really cares what he thinks about politics or social issues. Just tell them to spin the wheel and shut up, Pat. You have nothing of interest to say.

Keith and Rachel are my heroes and anyone who cannot handle the truth can take a hike.

I'm much more interested in having someone apologize for having inflicting Pat Sajak on the world. Giving Olberman his first national exposure is probably the only good thing to have come out of that lame and lousy talk show of his. He was even worse at interviewing celebrities than he is at hosting a game show; everyone knows that the only reason people have been watch WOF all these years is because how good Vanna White looks. If it hadn't been for her that show - and his career - would have been in the dumper a long time ago. I don't agree with everything Keith Olberman says but at least he always sounds like he has put some thought into the topics he comments on. That's more than you can say for Sajak, as his recent article in the National Review (or whatever right wing propaganda rag it was,) demonstrated all too well.

Yes. Pat. Show was cancelled.Why boring.
Get a life buddy.
Go to Dancing with the stars for some more press.

Matt Elliott, you're an idiot.

People who know Olbermann say he spends a lot of time in the bath tub soaking...and sulking...whenever a guest dares disagree with him. That's why his very, very rarely allows dissenters on his show, unlike Hannity and O'Reilly, who have an average of 5 per show per day. Basically, Olbermann is MSNBC's mean-spirited version of Glenn Beck.

It is just like the left to start with the character assination of Sajak for expressing an opinion. Olberman is a nut and should be fired. He is so unprofessional and just comes across as desperate and unreliable.

Olbermann was a boob on ESPN. He was not funny, or interesting
So Pat is really guilty of having bad taste.

But this hack was on TV before, and after Sajak.
He's the Sarah Palin of news commentary
BD

Pat Sajak, Tea Baggers and republicans will burn in hell for their hatred and racism.Somebody make them go away!!!!

Listen up Libs, if you are going to post insults about how stupid the right is; you probably should learn how to spell. Here is a clue "Spell Check"

Well, you just can't win 'em all, Pat! Being you're not and never was a seer, I'd just as well give you a pat on the back for effort. For the dimbrain Edward deMello below, Republicans were voted in by a majority, no, THE majority voters in the U.S. They were fed up with the FEDs and their minions of economic know-nothinged, societal dominitrixes. Unsurprisingly, those hitlers didn't get it in 2006. But what I can't believe is how conservatives actually stood on the sidelines and not voted while these clowns slipped into office. And as clowns, that's what they've been running since then, a circus with "nanny" pelosi as their ringleader and Okenyan as their babysitter. Admittedly, it seems the brainless masses turned brain-sharpened and voted with some sense this time around. Just keep your eyes peeled, cupcake. It's just getting started. We'll be seeing the end of Okenya-care and candy-assed rule in just a moment. . .Patty Perfect is right; Olberman is a know-nothing, blowhard. He may not drink kool-aid, but he sure has been drinking something awful strong. It should be banned!!!

Wow. And I thought "the man who was the nation's president during 9/11 "
was desperate these days! But seriously, it's good to be reminded of Sajak's existence. He's a living, breathing 80s-kitsch-Ebay-auction-item. Depending on how much I have to pay for the "Alf" doll with the slight tear in his belly, I might just bid on him!

Keith Olbermann, stupid as he was in donating money to guests, is one of the few liberals who manage to get national airtime to challenge the Party of Reagan and the economic policies that have bankrupted our country and the lies of a president who started a needless war that has cost thousands of American lives while he supported policies that perpetuated discrimination against gays, let churches support candidates without paying taxes and deregulate licensing and control of guns that kill over 10,000 American civilians every year.

Pat talks about vowels and consonants. He knows the difference. That's about all he knows.

Does he know where the money went? China. Does he know where the jobs went? China. Does he know who controls 90% of the wealth in America? 5% of the population. That is the wealth that isn't already controlled by China.

Funny Sajak takes credit for launching Olbermann on he talk show when no one even remembers Sajak ever had a talk show.

FYI Olberman is on 5 hours per week. Has been for years.

This was trending pretty well 2 seconds ago...oh, but not now

Thank you Pat Sajak!!! Keith is the best - too bad you didn't get past the "wheel".

Keith has fans ?????

Pat should just stick to playing Scrabble and keep his silly viewpoints to himself. Does he not realize that he is just Pat Sajak? Who gives a crap!

Wow! Pat Sajak had real guests on his show, I kinda remember him having a show although my memory is fuzzy when it comes to talk shows since let's see who also had a short-lived talk show: Alan Thicke, Chevy Chase who btw was Pat Sajak's first guest on his crummy show. I know this from internet archives not from actual viewing. I had the misfortune of seeing the show with Rush Limbaugh subhosting I forever understand that while he may aspire to be more than the Prince of Alphabets Pat Sajak in no way is someone whose short lived talk show influenced my opinions on anything other than buying a Vowel! What was the purpose of this being news...Thanks for the laugh I totally forgot that he actually put a talk show on a gift certificate which promptly expired.

P.S. Rick Dees got a talk show after Pat what does that say!

I wonder what Pat thinks about Rush Limbaugh?

BTW, THIS IS NOT NEWS IT'S "POLITICAL COMMENTARY"

"OK, MSNBC suspended him for only two shows. It would have been several months if he'd donated to Republicans."

What are you talking about? FOX literally has prominent Republican politicians on the pay roll. MSNBC has been trying harder lately, but it has NOTHING on FOX in the political agenda department.

"Olbermann tweeted today that, in fact, he had once been on CNN before the Sajak show, had gone on to great things on other prominent shows before MSNBC and was at one point interviewed by CBS to replace Sajak. "

Even colored by (I think) an attempt at witty sarcasm, this completely undermines what Sajak said and this complete article.

Pat Sajak you are my hero. I can't believe they put Olberman back on the air but where would all the dem lovers be without someone to tell them how to think. To John you wouldn't know the truth if it hit you smack dab in the head. Can't wait for the next election and the dems are completely wiped out.

FoxNews doantes to campaigns and the Tea Party all the time. Look up Ruppert Murdoch's history of donating money to the Bush campaign. Fair and Balanced?

Does Pat Sajak even WATCH Olbermann's show? He's not a ranter or a name-caller. Sure, he criticizes people, harshly sometimes, but it's never without reason, and he always provides facts to support his criticisms.

This is a bizarre article. It sounded like a joke at first and then it was obvious, after the mention of Fox news, that it was a Fox News attack.

wtf Pat Sajak is a complete moron. I enjoy watching Keith Olbermann

I liked Olberman when he did sports on KCBS, and if the right can have loud mouths than the left can have them too. Pat is a known republican, but I give him his due as he is a Vietnam veteran.

Repugs do much prefer a muted opposition.

If Olbermann is so great like everyone says, then way is FOX news beating the crap out of him in the ratings. And why would anyone donate to a democrat in the first place? They're either on welfare or the have 5 mansions. Either way it's a waste of money!

Who do we have to thank for your career?

Hey Ronald Lemley,

"Does anyone notice that the conservative rants are simple minded empty rhetoric. They no reasons or explanations for their opinions.
Pure inflamatory rhetoric.I like that.I guess the pendulum has swung so far to the right that we're all just thowing rocks and grunting like cave men.
What more can we expect of the party that finds fault with a peaceful, nature loving philosophy that puts peoiple first and big corporate interests second."


Read the post from Edward deMello to see who is peaceful and nature loving and who is hateful.

"Boo Hoo, Andy. Just cause Olberman won't drink the right eing(sic) kool-aid is no reason to be such a hater. Keith is om (sic) the side of the angels and you and that sap Sajak are obviously just more Limnaugh (Limbaugh)/Beck/Hannity lovers. This country is heading into the toilet becaise(sic) of right-wing scum and the idiot voters who support there(their) insane policies even when they DIRECTLY have a negative impact on there(their) lives. Nothing would satisfy you more than to see this country become even more of a facist(sic) Christian hate filled land. Come crying when you get what you desite(sic). An all white, gun carrying mob or religious cretins. In other words, Republicans."

This guy is so blinded by hate, that he can't even spell. As a conservative I never refer to other people as cretins, scum, or gun carrying mob. By the way, the 2 African-Americans elected to the House of Representatives last week were both Republicans so don't spit your racist accusations at the Right. That charge is getting old.

Who is going to apologize for Pat Sajak? Think Pat is trying to worm his way into Fox News now he is getting too old to tell horrible jokes on Wheel of Fortune.

Boldness and courage are what best describe good old Keith.To be so honest as supporting Hugo Chavez's efforts in venezuela and praising Cuba's free
health care and child care shows how dedicated to people's needs this guy is.
Limbaugh,O'reilly and Hannity are just poor modern versions of Joseph Goebel.

This is so humorous with the few followers that Olbermann has. Remember Rev. Jones of Jonestown? Every sect needs a "King of Fools" and the left wing nuts has Olbermann!

what a complete sappy moron (Sajak).. ! most likely Sajak is craving a little publicity and this was all he could come up with for his fading career as the Man of Wheel of Fortune! Just pathetic!
what a lost soul! sorry Pat, you are the big disappointment here!

Wow, what an insightful, entertaining, intelligent piece! The degree of substance here must be a revelation of the new heights the LAT is attempting to reach but I can't imagine that anyone could top this! I woke up this morning expecting to read about murder and mayhem, maybe a bit about how the president is trying to save the nation, but no! instead I find this gem, this dollop of freshly whipped cream atop the mundane chocolate pudding! I never have to read another of your columns now because this is the pinnacle of your career....a paraphrasing of Pat Sajak's incredibly significant blog about a topic of national importance beats out anything! thanks for making sure we all know this is happened. I don't know how I could have gotten through the weekend without knowing that this. I am overwhelmed with gratitude.

Keith donated and got kicked off for a while but I read that Joe donated too and nothing happened,, double standard,,

It looks to me that most of the people posting on this are really mad liberals. You don't see the hatred coming from the right like you do the left. It really is sad. I'm sure I'll get lots of hatred coming my way for having an opinion differing from theirs.

Pat Sajak? Really? After being fortunate enough to have one of better-paying yet least consequential jobs on television, is this a stab at some sort of relevance. Otherwise, who would have thought of Pat Sajak this week, this month, this year? Why would Olbermann progress to "ranting" in recent years? Let's start with having a republican congress that has a primary mission of ensuring our president's failure in office but being too cowardly to admit it publicly. Let's talk about a republican congressional leader who advises the previous president to structure overseas troop movements and removals in a manner that would positively effect political outcomes. Let's talk about an environment that makes it okay to constantly refer to the middle name of the president in a manner that is more overtly racist than bigots have previously lacked the confidence or approval to entertain; It's ALL worth ranting about and those items don't even round-out the top 5. Perhaps if Sajak can get Vanna to turn over a few more letters she can fill in the gaps that he's so obviously lacking. "Wheel of Misfortune" indeed.

I just don't understand why Pat Sajak denies that after Viet Nam he was stationed in Bad Hersfeld, Germany at McPheeters Barracks instead of being at the Pentagon. I guess I was drinking to many of those good old German brewsky's back in those days and was having halusinations(or however you spell it)that Pat was there when we built a little deejay counter and piped the music through the service club and Pat and I played deejay for the G.I.'s there. So I guess I'm sorry to, that I thought I knew Pat Sajak way back in 1971. But anyway, I just want to say one more time how I used to greet Pat during this dreamland I was living in. Hey Pat S-a-a-a-a-y-y-y-y-y-y-jack. (Said with a lotta soul)

Don't worry, Pat.
You are not that important. NOBODY watched your show. NOBODY cares what you have to say.
Your wheel has stopped spinning.

 
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A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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