Pat and Keith’s Excellent Adventure: Pundit Soap Operas

Submitted by Mark Esposito, Guest Blogger

Venerable daytime soap One Life To Live may have signed off for the last time Friday after 44 years, but the tales of two political pundits  are poised to take up the slack. msnbc reports that uber-conservative Pat Buchanan has been granted leave of absence from the cable network after coming out with his new screed book, Suicide of a Superpower. With tantalizing chapter titles  like The End of White America and The Death of Christian America, network chief Phil Griffin pulled the plug on msnbc’s version of the “Wild Man of Borneo” in October saying he “didn’t think it should be part of the national dialogue much less part of the dialogue on MSNBC.” Amen to that brother, but shouldn’t we at least get a little sample like this beaut:

Back then, black and white lived apart, went to different schools and churches, played on different playgrounds, and went to different restaurants, bars, theaters, and soda fountains. But we shared a country and a culture. We were one nation. We were Americans.

And here’s one that I selected in honor of Martin Luther King Day:

Half a century after Martin Luther King envisioned a day when his children would be judged ‘not by the color of their skin, but the content of their character,’ journalists of color are demanding the hiring and promotion of journalists based on the color of their skin. Jim Crow is back. Only the color of the beneficiaries and the color of the victims have been reversed.

Pure poetry there, Pat, and so true — in that  fawning Jim Crow sort of way you have. No word yet on just when Pat might make his triumphant return, but Vegas says the odds aren’t good for the  man who makes many of us think of Nixon and his gang of marauders along with that “Southern Strategy.” Query, who came up with  that idea for Nixon?  For the youthful readers, ol’ Pat was a “Tricky Dicky” speechwriter and political adviser before branching out into punditry.

The left wasn’t immune from the drama either, as acknowledged drama-king Keith Olbermann was MIA from the Al Gore fledgling network Current following a dispute over production values for his show, Countdown. Now, I’ve watched Olbermann a few times since his move from msnbc, and the production values at Current aren’t great from riotously funny graphic snafus to blown light bulbs, the show has that high school play feel sometimes, but for a cool 10 million dollars a year you think ol’ Keith could suck it up and at least attend the network’s coverage of the Iowa Caucuses. The sides have since made peace, but not until lawyering up over Keith’s role.  Olbermann is known for a thin skin, leaving both msnbc and ESPN in now famous huffs over issues like unauthorized political contributions and unauthorized TV appearances. The word at Current is that Olbermann was miffed when Al Gore hired former CNN exec David Borman as network president, effectively supplanting Keith as the network’s chief newsman.  Reports are that Olbermann removed the title as Current’s “chief news officer” from his Twitter page following the hire. While the network and it’s only star say they have made up for now, history says it’s only a matter of time until the next blowup.

Will Pat ever get back to Morning Joe and talking about the good ol’ days of the 50’s — the 1850’s? Can Keith avoid broadcasting in the dark and bringing his lawyers to every production meeting? Stay tuned.

Sources:  CBS News; New York Times; TPM

~Mark Esposito, Guest Blogger

43 thoughts on “Pat and Keith’s Excellent Adventure: Pundit Soap Operas

  1. The reason Ron Paul and Buchanan sound alike is that they are both paleo-conservatives. If Paul was really libertarian he wouldn’t want to regulate vaginas. Buchanan wraps himself in the flag of victimhood: the previously superior positioned white man stripped of his privilege. that comes off as racist and sexist as a byproduct. I don’t think he and Ron Paul are in the same boat at all.
    Ron Paul was featured in the movie Bruno, who came on to him in a hotel room. It was hilarious, but exonerates Paul of the homophobia charge.

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