Olbermann “runs” MSNBC… Fox and Friends livid

olbermanncoulter.jpg Round 172 of the war between MSNBC and Fox News commenced early Wednesday morning.

In a recent article on Keith Olbermann, a senior executive at MSNBC was cited as saying, “Keith runs MSNBC. It’s been an amazing turnaround, because two years ago they were going to cancel him. Because of his success, he’s in charge. Chris Matthews is infuriated by it.”

As interpreted by the hosts of Fox & Friends, this statement means that “the truth according to Keith Olbermann at MSNBC is that he runs things. He’s essentially running the news department.”

The Fox hosts took turns finding reasons to disparage Olbermann’s success, beginning with Gretchen Carlson, who stated insinuatingly, “Keith Olbermann has invented himself several times. He never played sports, but he ended up being a popular sportscaster on ESPN. He’s never really had a political background, but now — in a surprising move, I think, if you’re trying to be objective — he sits in on the political coverage with Chris Matthews.”

Steve Doocy then accused MSNBC of violating truth in advertising standards, saying, “Keith Olbermann’s show, while they consider it and they categorize it as a news show — it’s not a news show. It’s a commentary show. It’s clearly commentary, and how they get away with that, I don’t know.”

Brian Kilmeade continued the same line of attack, quoting two classic Olbermann lines from December 2006, when he called the Republican party “the leading terrorist group in this country” and said to President Bush, “You, sir, have now given us chaos and called it order. You, sir, have now imposed subjugation and called it freedom.”

“That, I believe,” said Kilmeade triumphantly, “is an opinion.”

“And should we be concerned about the next quote?” Carlson chimed in. “‘Fox News is worse than Al-Qaeda.'”

Doocy concluded by attempting to draw a contrast with the situation at Fox, saying, “Sean Hannity is a partisan. … [He and Alan Colmes] don’t do our political coverage, they do commentary. And it’s just extraordinary that MSNBC has got a partisan sitting in the chair, and not only that, he’s running the network.”

Fox’s Bill O’Reilly has engaged in a battle with Olbermann over who’s more “unfair and unbalanced” for a year or so, but the sniping between the cable news networks goes back almost five years.

In 2003, the New York Times reported, “The nascent battle between the Fox News Channel and MSNBC for the hearts and minds of American television viewers has spilled over from news coverage to network promotions and jabs at each other.”

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