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Democracy 'benefits greatly from having Keith Olbermann’s voice heard,' Al Gore declares

Former newspaper reporter Al Gore did not invent journalism. Or democracy. Or TV, for that matter.

But he finally got his no-name cable channel mentioned prominently in other media Tuesday with the announcement that political provocateur Keith Olbermann would launch a prime-time show there late this spring.

Olbermann, obviously reeling from Rupert Murdoch's rejection of hiring him again at Fox, has agreed to appear on and help manage Gore's channel.Keith Olbermann and Al Gore now TV partners

We've all heard of CEO's and CFO's. Well, Keith will be CNO of Gore's channel, meaning chief news officer, whatever that means.

In a conference call with reporters Gore said that in addition to his own hour-long show of the usual leftist rants, Olbermann will help develop other shows and provide his editorial guidance to someone there.

The newly-not-quite-fired-but-sort-of-dismissed MSNBC commentator will also receive an equity stake in the channel, whose Current average national evening audience wouldn't fill half an NFL stadium.

Slipping back into VP-speak, Gore said, "I find myself in susbstantial agreement with the views I've heard Keith Olbermann express." Translation: We think alike.

So KO seems unlikely to incur any censorship problems that he says he did not have at MSNBC. There, thanks to President George W. Bush, Keith helped revive its ratings from nowhere to somewhere, albeit a distant county from Fox News Channel.

Gore noted, somewhat defensively, that his channel is now available in more homes than MSNBC was in 2003. Key word there = "available." Our colleague Scott Collins reports here on MSNBC immediately disputing those numbers, perhaps an indication of the global warming competition ahead.

The Gore-Olbermann combo makes sense as they have much in common: Gore wasn't hired as president in 2000 and Olbermann again lost his job on Jan. 21.

 In effect, Gore is trying to do what other obscure outlets have tried to do to raise their viewer visibility in an overcrowded media scene. Think cable's Versus signing up the National Hockey League. Think TBS signing Conan O'Brien to a late-night show after his departure from NBC. Even the Discovery Channel went for Sarah Palin's behind-the-family-scenes Palintorial travel show set in Alaska.

Another nice benefit for Olbermann: It turns out that Gore, like the Republican Party all these years, thinks political donations are a form of free speech. So the K-man, who got in trouble for such political contributions just before The End when he was losing so badly to Bill O'Reilly, not only can give money to candidates he's promoting on his show; he's expected to.

That way all 23,000 Olbermann viewers will know they're getting the straight KO schtick.

-- Andrew Malcolm

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Comments () | Archives (12)

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provocateur ?? You dimwitted, dimlit, no panache writer!

Calling Keith a provocateur? Is because you do not understand thought provoking.

Get a clue

Former Bush aide, partisan shill & condemned-to-dying-print cynic Andrew Malcolm continues his misinformation campaign with attack piece on his critics Keith Olbermann & Al Gore. Unsurprisingly, mine is the only comment and perhaps reader. This hatchet job can be paralled with his misreporting of Gallup poll numbers on the Dems' Lame Duck session, editing images to make it look like Ginsberg fell asleep during the SOTU and many other acts that will condemn him to print for the foreseeable future.

Here's a great recipe you can find on Current TV!

Take a bloated slow-witted penguin, add an ego-maniac narcissist turkey, put the turkey in charge. What do you get? Road Kill.

Andrew Malcolm has written a snarky little mendacious column here. He obviously has a problem with the facts. Is Malcolm simply ignorant or just telling lies?

Al Gore actually WAS "hired as president in 2000". He received over a half-million votes compared to his opponent, the odious George W. Bush. Gore also received more votes in the state of Florida, as all post-election analyses of the entire state have demonstrated. Jeb Bush, Kathryn Harris and the five right-wingers on the US Supreme Court made sure that every vote would not be counted and that Bush would be installed in the White House, even though he lost both the popular and electoral vote.

Keith Olbermann has always had a smaller audience than the miscreants and unhinged conservative nutballs at Fox "News". There are many reasons for this. But Olbermann did much, much better than his competition among viewers who were well-educated, literate, higher income, and in the 18 to 40 demographic. O'Reilly's viewers were heavily old, male, white, southern and low income.

We'll see how well Keith Olbermann's new show does on Current TV. It may or may not succeed economically. But it will definitely succeed in providing his badly needed voice to those of us who want the truth, rather than the corporate dominated, slanted mainstream networks. Fox "News" is a biased, right-wing joke. It's just propaganda. Don't you know that by now? Even its viewers admit that.

So, continue with your snarky, juvenile name-calling and mud slinging against these two Americans and anyone else who you disagree with. We'll consider it from the source.

It’s my opinion that this is a horrible article. It appears to be written with a clear personal and political bitter partiality. If you were stating an opinion then be frank enough to state it’s my opinion. Obliviously, you have some personal problems with Keith Olbermann and quite possible Al Gore. By the way, American did choose Al Gore. But whatever happened in Florida apparently did not coincide with that decision made by the voters. So we took an eight year vacation on global leadership which included writing bad checks and creating bad impression of environmental irresponsibility and financial greed. This article lacks objectivity and imputes motive for the thoughts of influential men like Olbermann and Gore. I would suggest that you should not attempt to predict the minds and motives of people who think differently than you. I’m glad some people can think rationally and lack ill will for those who think differently. But I also regret both your profit and participation in the distribution of this type of gossipy articles. Next time, sell it to the National Enquirier and not the Los Angeles Times.

ha ha ha ha ha ....maybe Keith can help the Goreacle release his chakra.

To JimCap and his wife Linda.....nice piece of revisionist history you got going there. In fact, it is well documented that Gore did not have the majority of votes in FL despite trying to count all the dangling chads and using Miss Cleo to magically discern the intent of the voter. Gore lost. Gore lost. Gore lost.

Another gem by Jim

"But it will definitely succeed in providing his badly needed voice to those of us who want the truth, rather than the corporate dominated, slanted mainstream networks. Fox "News" is a biased, right-wing joke. It's just propaganda. Don't you know that by now? Even its viewers admit that."

You sir, are delusional...have you no shame? Keith wouldn't know the truth if it bit him in the arse. MSNBC is a biased, left wing joke. It's just propaganda. Don't you know that by now? Even its viewers admit that...well the semi-intelligent ones at least recognize that it is a joke and propaganda.

I used to question Gore's morality & ethics when he was in public office. Guess I was wrong. Hiring Oberman proves Gore is both immoral & unethical.

With such prestigious endorsements as those from Talaee,Stanisloski and Jim
& Linda Cap,the Gore/Olberman machine is sure to corner the much sought
after lunatic fringe viewer market.The people who knew Gore best,that is the
voters from his own state of Tenessee voted for Geoge Bush and despite Bill
Clinton's best efforts,his home state of Arkansas also gave Al thumbs down. I
will not elaborate on that ''massage therapist'' thing as no grounds sufficient to bring it to court materialized.One should always remember the old saying:
''Whoever lays dow with dogs will get fleas.''

Reading this article was quite amusing and relaxing. I enjoy satire and irony
and Mr Malcolm's inimitable irreverent style always brings out the real
traits and character of our public people.Gore and Olberman as 2 of the worst
narcissists around,were treated in the most charitable way commensurate with
the sad reality.

I truyl enjoyed Keith Olberman, this is a great lost to independent journalizing.

Talk about ROI meets LOL. Keith will bring exactly zero new viewers to the network because Keith doesn't know which channel it's on.

A pretend network run by two losers of epic proportion. Good ridden Keith.


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About the Columnist
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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