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Countdown with Keith Olbermann

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“Countdown With Keith Olbermann,” the landmark news and commentary program that reordered the world of cable news, returns as a daily podcast. Olbermann’s daily news-driven mix will include his trademark “Special Comment” political analysis, the tongue-in-cheek “Worst Persons In The World” segment, and his timeless readings from the works of the immortal James Thurber. The man who turned SportsCenter into a cultural phenomenon will broaden the content to include a daily sports segment, a daily call for help for a suffering dog, and a remarkable series of anecdotes covering a career that stretched from covering the 1980 Olympic Miracle on Ice a month after his 21st birthday, to anchoring the 2009 Presidential Inauguration and the 2009 Super Bowl pre-game show in a span of just twelve days, to rejoining ESPN as a “rookie” baseball play-by-play man at the age of 59.
422 Episodes
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SERIES 2 EPISODE 162: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: Stochastic threat number one million. Trump returns to his propaganda channel to insist that his thugs should be, quoting his online post, “allowed to protest at the front steps of Courthouses, all over the country” rather than be “rudely and systematically shut down and ushered off to far away ‘holding areas’ essentially denying them their constitutional rights.” He tells them “Rally behind MAGA. Save our country. The only thing you have to fear is fear itself.” When THAT stochastic call to lay siege to federal buildings didn’t work (why does that sound SO familiar?) Trump tried what he thinks is smooth and subtle. “The Palestinian Protests at Columbia University have closed the college down. But the area surrounding the Courthouse in Downtown Manhattan, is closed up like a drum, with New York City’s Finest (Police) all over the place. Why not send some to Columbia… Republicans want the right to protest in front of the courthouse like everyone else.” Again. Seems oddly familiar. Reduce law enforcement around an area Trump wants to see sacked by gangs and militias and morons ready to spring him or hang a Vice President or, who knows, kill a judge. He forgot to note “will be wild.” Justice Juan Merchan  There is little for Justice Juan Merchan to DO about this latest threat other than to encourage the city and the state of New York to have tanks ready because frankly if Trump terrorist gangs again rise up against the government as he had them do on January 6th the only way the point is going to be made clear is if it ends with the New York Department of Sanitation having to clean them up with brooms and hoses and garbage trucks. But with Trump following yesterday's half-day in court ending with more violations of the gag order, Merchan can at least regain control of this mess by - if not jailing Trump at today's gag order hearing - at least saying: if you do it again I will revoke your jail and send you to Rikers Island. We have to grasp this nettle eventually, let's do it now. In the long term, the ACTUAL Trump Legal headline may have come not from New York but Florida where witness exhibits in the Trump Espionage case reveal that the feds have a small coterie of witnesses close to Trump including an unidentified Person 16, clearly a senior Trump aide but not in the innermost circle, who revealed nothing less than the fact that Trump’s “people” told his valet and co-defendant Walt Nauta not to worry about the stolen documents case, that it’s not going anywhere, yet even if he were to, say, get charged with lying to the FBI, Trump will pardon him after he regains power. B-Block (26:33) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: The man Nate Silver once thought was a top-five candidate to be the next Democratic presidential nominee, Eric Adams, is down to 16% support for re-election as mayor of New York. Kevin McCarthy is surprised to learn his claim Hillary Clinton never conceded is a lie. And ESPN's policy - no, you can't be a sportscaster on one station and an advocate for a presidential candidate on another - was right. I know: I helped to author it because the day when you (or I) could is long gone. So why is today's ESPN letting Stephen A. Smith do it? Why is he campaigning for Trump on Fox News? ESPN must silence him - or fire him. C-Block (37:32) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: So I once had an agent named Art Kaminsky who at the same time he was negotiating to extend my deal at KCBS in Los Angeles was also sending his other clients in for the job. And he ordered his partner Lou Oppenheim to NOT tell me as he literally walked out of the meeting at which KCBS told him whether or not I was staying. This all ends with them serving me with papers hours before my first SportsCenter, 32 years ago this month!See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SEASON 2 EPISODE 161: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: Justice Juan Merchan MUST put Trump's ass in jail for violating the gag order - even if it's only one hour at Rikers Island. Trump is determined to break Merchan, break the New York Court, break the Criminal Justice System. He is a cornered and wounded animal and this is life-or-death for him. Think of a cockroach - only with thumbs. So it's him or us that gets broken, and Merchan has to make sure it isn't us. Trump tried to finesse the gag order by quoting somebody else – this worm Watters from Fox – denigrating the jurors and the judge and adding to the pile of stochastic inducements to violence against anyone who thwarts Trump. And by morning one of the jurors – the silhouette of their name and the vague depiction of their home – was quitting out of fear. Because what Trump sought by denigrating the jury WORKS. Because Trump’s intimidation WORKS. Because Trump’s terrorism WORKS. Prosecutors began Day 3 of the trial yesterday noting he had violated the gag order SEVEN times just since jury selection started and they actually UNDER-SOLD the most egregious of the violations, with Joshua Steinglass saying “the defendant reposted about liberals lying to try to get on the jury, a post by Jesse Watters.” That was NOT a re-post. Trump does dozens of re-posts a day. You hit a re-post icon, a couple of rounded arrows. Maybe you add a comment. Trump KNOWS what a re-post IS. That is NOT what Trump – or someone in control of the social media account bearing his name – DID. What Trump did was to make a NEW post, QUOTING Watters. It redd – and still reads:“They are catching undercover Liberal Activists lying to the Judge in order to get on the Trump Jury - Jesse Watters.” It is in Trump’s own electronic hand. It is not a re-post. It is not ‘technically ok within the gag order’ because Trump ISN’T lying about the judge and the jurors and endangering them all, he’s just QUOTING Jesse Watters lying about the judge and the jurors and endangering them all. RUNNING THE HEADLINES: Derrick Van Orden, a walking PTSD demonstration, calls Matt Gaetz "tubby" and Marjorie Taylor Greene demands anybody who votes for Ukraine aid be conscripting into its military as the House Republican caucus comes apart at the seems. Happily Jared Moskowitz is there with the big yucks and a Rick Perry protege has the best idea yet: four Republicans should resign from the House to own the liberals. FOUR? How about FIVE? FIFTY? Think big be big my friend! And why on earth did Kari Lake devote a disturbingly large part of a campaign speech to repeatedly saying "strap-on?" B-Block (31:18) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: Clay Travis goes from being the knight in shining armor defending the sanctity of women's sports from destruction by trans athletes, to insisting that Caitlin Clark isn't actually popular and nobody CARES about women's sports. The Charlotte GOP still hasn't realized it insulted Trump online and he'll see it eventually. And Twain was wrong: history DOES sometimes repeat itself. In 2005 I watched on in astonishment as Bo Dietl began his new MSNBC show by calling a gay reporter a "fudge-packer" and get fired within two weeks. Now, he's been fired for ANOTHER homophobic rant directed at ANOTHER reporter. Did you know Dietl's specialty in the NYPD was to serve as the mugging decoy? So he was mugged 500 times? Does it show? C-Block (48:00) EVERY DOG HAS ITS DAY: Snowie is fine - now - but her family could use a little help plowing through the bills for the medical wizardry that saved her life. (49:30) FRIDAYS WITH THURBER: Appropriately enough, Thurber takes a dog who was alive when Teddy Roosevelt was president and makes him seem as new as the youngest pup. "The Dog That Bit People."See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SERIES 2 EPISODE 160: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: Trump is an idiot. Trump is an idiot who employs other idiots. Trump is an idiot who employs other idiots and who thinks Jimmy Kimmel and Al Pacino are the same guy. And he'll probably come back later with some nonsensical and irrational explanation that he was joking or being metaphorical or to him they might as well be the same or that Kimmel is the palindrome of Pacino or it's like when he wittily called Nikki Haley "Nancy Pelosi." He. Is. An. Idiot. And more substantively, Trump publicly admitted that he believed his lawyers had "unlimited" jury strikes; that they could disqualify an infinite number of potential jurors in his trial for Election Interference in New York. Think about the implication here: it never occurred to Trump (or doesn't matter to him) that to have "unlimited" jury strikes would mean any defendant could literally stall the start of his trial FOREVER and no one would ever be tried for - let alone convicted OF - ANYTHING. It just gets worse from there. We learn his Bodega stunt Tuesday was astroturfed because the New York Young Republicans who staged it couldn't resist taking a team picture at it, so they can be identified in the crowd. Trump is an idiot who employs other idiots. B-Block (24:24) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: I don't know what made me think of him but think of him I did. The mandarin of Los Angeles news was Jerry Dunphy and even he acknowledged it: On the air, he was simply a teleprompter-reading machine. More than once, it came with hilarious consequences. C-Block (41:30) GOOD NIGHT AND GOOD LUCK.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SERIES 2 EPISODE 159: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: There’s nothing better than a good NAP. “Now: Trump’s head slowly dropped, his eyes closed. It jerked back upward. He adjusts himself. Then, his head droops again. He straightens up, leaning back. His head drops for a third time, he shakes his shoulders. Eyes closed still. His head drops. Finally, he pops his eyes open. My heart aches, and a drowsy numbness pains my sense, as though of hemlock I had drunk, or emptied some dull opiate to the drains." Honestly: You’re Trump, on Monday they literally catch you napping. How do you possibly go in there yesterday and get caught napping… at least TWICE. One video, or one rapid-shutter sequence of still pictures of “Trump’s head slowly dropped, his eyes closed. It jerked back upward. He adjusts himself. Then, his head droops again” and we don’t have to WATCH the rest of the trial, he’d be DONE. Looks like we'll get this started Monday. Seven jurors chosen. I had forgotten what I learned during two days in the NYC jury pool in 2013: it is surprisingly easy to find enough people who don’t know anything about anything to fill up a New York jury. Meanwhile Trump tried out his new defense: He knows nothing. Billionaire businessman, greatest mind of his or any other generation, but when it comes to paying off Stormy Daniels to bury her story and illegally keep bad facts about himself away from the eyes of the electorate weeks before the election, and then turning the thing into a clear crime by trying to write it off as a business expense? He knows nothing. He doesn’t know the accountant. He doesn’t know the lawyer. He didn’t know anything about the document. He didn’t know anything about the deduction. He just signed whatever they put in front of him. Because the billionaire businessman knows NOTHING about his own business! ALSO: The picture is a rare one of Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene with her mouth shut. It's in The New Republic and above it the magazine's question is: “Russia is Buying Politicians in Europe. Is it Happening Here Too?” After Greene decided to try to fire another Speaker of the House to destabilize our government further, and her screw-up in the Mayorkas hearing, it's a question worth exploring. B-Block (24:38) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: Baseball's uniform scandal is back. The pitcher is wearing the batboy's pants. The Speaker of the House had his brain trust look at his new bill first: Libs of TikTok and DC Draino and a 1/6 defendant. And I used to think the Supreme Court Justices were merely not there to do justice or defend the constitution. Now I'm not sure they're from this country, nor have more of a legal education than I do (and I took one law class 37 years ago). C-Block (33:00) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: Just passed the quarter century anniversary of one of the most fun, most unexpected events of my career. How many people do you know who can say this: Tom Hanks, Ben Affleck and Matt Damon pulled me on to the Red Carpet at the Oscars - and they broke my cummerbund!See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SERIES 2 EPISODE 158: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: Seriously? Donald Trump fell asleep at his trial yesterday. First trial. First day. First session. Fell asleep. Upright. At the trial that could end with him going to prison. During the trial. But it’s Biden with the stamina problem. Biden, who’s too old. Trump fell asleep. At the defense table. But we should be worried about Biden. Trump fell asleep during discussion of his own tweets, his own threats, his own lawyers’ insistence that this is the greatest witchhunt and Abraham Lincoln got off easily compared to this and whatever else they said. “His mouth going slack and his head drooping onto his chest,” she added later in the paper.  If this had happened to Biden – if this had happened to Biden at wherever HE might be that could be, what, one one-thousandth as serious as Trump’s trial involving PRISON TIME – if this had happened to Biden it would be the only thing on the news, the only thing on television, the only thing on the internet, the only thing in all forms of extra-sensory communication. Don't worry the media will go back to telling voters that what they should be worried about is how sleepy President Biden is. And don't worry, Don Snore-leone wasn’t sleeping for HIMSELF – he was sleeping for the sake of the January 6th hostages. The other true headline from the trial is that this is NOT a trial about Trump paying off a porn star to keep their sex secret from his wife or even from the public. This is a trial about Trump interfering with the 2016 election by illegally suppressing facts that the voters should’ve KNOWN and JUDGED for themselves. Voters in the General Election. Voters in the primary. Trump is NOT on trial for Hush Money. Trump is NOT on trial for banging a porn star. Trump is on trial for his favorite crime, the one he never stops talking about. TRUMP… IS ON TRIAL… FOR ELECTION INTERFERENCE. This happened as Biden's poll streak (ahead in Politico, cuts Trump's NY Times lead from 5 to 1) is so dominant now even some reporters have noticed. I mean Jonathan Martin wrote: "I’ll say it: there’s an elite tendency to assign Trump a better chance to win than he merits, to show THIS TIME you’re not out of touch." Of course he didn't mean reporters. He meant foreign diplomats. Because you've seen them on TV: America's political reporters clearly don't own MIRRORS! B-Block (25:49) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: Five of them! Elon Musk continues to be Russia's streetwalker (and Marjorie Bitter Greene helps). CNN cancels its top news show (Charles Barkley and Gayle King). Another RFK Jr staffer beclowns him (and turns out to have been pardoned by Trump and seems to still be working for him). Comedian Rob Schneider was so beyond-the-pale that even Republican Senate staffers walked out of his set. And 48 hours later, Governor Sununu of New Hampshire continues to prove he is our Franz Von Papen, the cynical German politician who brokered the deal to launch the 3rd Reich because it was ONLY politics. C-Block (36:37) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: The passing of Fritz Peterson is marked by many as the end to an extraordinary sports story of half a century ago where New York Yankees teammates "traded lives" (and, incidentally, wines). By others it's the loss of the statistically-best pitcher ever to call original Yankee Stadium home. To me, he was the man from whom I took away his bid for a no-hitter. Seriously.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SERIES 2 EPISODE 157: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: In the SportsCenter computer I read something that made my blood run cold. It was one line in a preliminary script for the 6:30 PM SportsCenter for Monday, June 14, 1994. O.J. Simpson’s wife and a man with her had been murdered. The script noted “Simpson is NOT a suspect.” What made my blood run cold was not the news of the murders. It was that phrase. It might as well have been “of COURSE Simpson is not a suspect.” The problem was, I knew Simpson was a suspect because I had not a doubt in my mind that Simpson had butchered them because I knew what all of us who worked – or had worked – in L.A. media knew – that the O.J. Simpson known to the public, to TV audiences, movie audiences, sports audiences, was an utter fabrication. I knew he had hit his wife. I knew the authorities in Los Angeles had done nothing about it. I knew the sportscasters in Los Angeles – including me – had done nothing about it, though I wondered then and have known since that there was almost nothing WE could have done about it, legally. I called police source in L.A. and he was emphatic:: “whatever you do, DON’T say he’s a suspect. We’re terrified he’s going to run. This guy has make-for-the-border written all over him. Or off himself maybe. But yeah, maybe…” and he had had to stop himself from laughing… “maybe you want to drop that part about NOT a suspect. Jesus. Not a suspect? HE’S OUR ONLY SUSPECT." I then had to explain it to executives - representative of the America of 1994 - who were still saying aloud "Poor O.J." There is no comparison to Simpson's fall in American history. And the system of the time was designed to protect him, the way the system of today protects similar scumbags. ALSO: The Johnson-Trump conference today was Johnson's idea and Trump is not in favor of getting rid of the Speaker. And RFK Jr gets rid of the New York staffer who admitted the campaign is about getting Trump, not Kennedy, elected. But it turns out he's got at least one more saying essentially the same thing. B-Block (26:30) IN SPORTS: It's amazing that Shohei Ohtani could have so relied on his interpreter Ippei Mizuhara that basically nobody else could talk to Ohtani, and Mizuhara could exploit that reality to secretly steal millions from him. But the FIGURES involved are twice as amazing: $16,000,000 embezzled? 19,000 bets on sporting events in three years? Gambling wins and losses totaling $325,000,000? Also America's hottest new team is the Indiana Fever, and no, there aren't more baseball pitchers being injured this year than the last ten years. C-Block (41:05) FRIDAYS WITH THURBER: A first-time story, which reads as if it was ripped from today's headlines. In his profile of his boss, discoverer, and the founder of The New Yorker Harold Ross, Thurber told of Ross's assisting, who took advantage of his boss's inattentiveness to money to embezzle the equivalent of one and a half million from him and bet most of it on sporting events. There are so many similarities it sounds as if Ohtani's interpreter used the story as an instruction manual: "The Secret Life Of Harold Winney."See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SERIES 2 EPISODE 156: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: For a time it looked like Trump had actually played three-dimensional chess with abortion; that absolutism in Arizona and elsewhere and the push for a federal ban would allow him to move the Overton Window and look like the moderate who would save the day. Then the Arizona Republicans told Trump to go eff himself - that they want to KEEP the 1864 law that the Supreme Court dug up and revivified. Now Trump, and Kari Lake, and all the other national Arizona Republicans are absolutely screwed. The mine has caved in on Trumpy. In the interim he can always turn to losing more attempts to stall his New York trial (and he has) and to antisemitism (now it's Jews who don't support him "should have their head examined"). And he could turn to his new spokesmodel, Karoline Leavitt, who thinks one word is pronounced "Hench MAN" and another "dammaning" and I swear she is the reincarnation of that Miss Teen contestant from 2007 ("I believe that our education like such as in South Africa and the Iraq everywhere like such as and I believe that they should our education over here in the US...") B-Block (21:42) IN SPORTS: New York Times reports Ohtani's interpreter altered the settings on his account so he could embezzle at least $4,500,000 from the baseball star to pay off gambling debts; interpreter now negotiating guilty plea with feds. (24:52) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: Joe Scarborough and MSNBC executives re-platform disgraced, banned, Mark Halperin; Maria Bartiromo promises to call the governor to get the Trump prosecutor fired; Biden's former Chief of Staff Ron Klain f-bombs Biden's campaign strategy and doesn't stop to think somebody might be recording it. He should leave the country until after the election, the idiot. C-Block (35:00) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: First it was Lawrence O'Donnell seated on a curbside table in the restaurant in front of my home. Now, it's the impossible Harris Faulkner of Fox News. Can I get the city Board of Health to close this place down already?See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SERIES 2 EPISODE 155: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: It was a two-word post by Trump: "Biden Trials!!!" and it followed by a day a quote from a Trump campaign official outlining plans to prosecute Joe Biden next year: "Everything you have seen from the Biden DOJ, you can expect to see from the Trump DOJ.”  Everything? Well, what does that mean? It means: Everything. And particularly the thing that matters most to Trump, upon which rests his ability to not feel himself a total failure: that he never loses and everybody else does. That he didn't lose the 2020 election. It was stolen from him. When his staff says "Biden Trials" they might mean over classified documents or business or Commander the dog. To Trump, it MUST mean: Prosecuting Biden in a dream trial in which a court rules Trump really won in 2020 and it really was stolen from him and Biden was the man who stole it. Also: more of Trump's antisemitism is showing. American Jews who don't support him "should be spoken to." And he's already confirmed Monday's "Abortion Ban" video was a lie. And yet another poll shows a significant majority of Republicans believe HE should be allowed to rule without waiting for congress or the courts. The good news? The polls are now breaking almost entirely in Biden's direction.  B-Block (25:45) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: The German Soccer Federation learns never to use an "open" font for the number 44. Montana GOP Senate candidate Tim Sheehy is so tough he still carries a bullet from when he was shot in Afghanistan. Or, from when he dropped his gun in the parking lot and shot himself. Or... And like eight good minutes about Geraldo Rivera and how this little thing between the two of us in the wake of his hilarious self-own while criticizing Larry David, actually dates back to his anger that NBC was promoting my show and not his in 1997, and how he promised to "fight" me in 2007. I know I should fear him: he has a mustache. C-Block (41:40) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: The greatest scoop of my sportscasting career came when I did nothing more than continually answer the phone as viewers called in to tell me the owner of the L.A. Kings had just told them he was trading for Wayne Gretzky. But the second greatest scoop of my sportscasting career came because I really wanted some pizza so I happened to be walking past the bar across the street from the pizza parlor at the exact moment the exact guy who had the exact info I needed, stepped out of the bar and started YELLING that info at the top of his lungs. It's the George Steinbrenner story.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SERIES 2 EPISODE 154: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: You can never say a cockroach can't survive something, and after all he IS Donald J. Cockroach. But he has now made a spectacular, amazing unforced error with this video in which he pretends to say that abortion bans should be (and would be) left to the states. He never says that, but the evangelicals who are the spine of his fanatical base don't know that. And for once the idiocy of the stenographic news media will work to hurt Trump because they repeated without examination the impression he successfully left that he was backing away from any federal abortion ban. All that will do is piss off those evangelicals, so enraged that even Lindsey Graham felt compelled to repudiate what Trump said. It's obviously not going to convince any liberals and when the reality is made clear that he never said a damn thing about vetoing a federal abortion ban sent to him by a Republican house and senate, it wouldn't help him with that handful in the middle. More important perhaps is what made Trump speak on the subject NOW, with the election still 211 days away. Unless he had some sudden compulsion to repudiate his life lived inside the fine print of scam contracts and confidence tricks, there is only one conclusion: the internal polling done on Trump's behalf shows he is getting DESTROYED on abortion in general, and an abortion ban specifically, and he had to run the risk of damaging religious nut job and handmaiden support in what is already - even now - a desperate last-minute attempt to put some space between him and how ever bad the damage the abortion issue is doing to him. B-Block (25:27) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: It's the thought that counts, I guess: a news organization reports "eclipse glasses" being recalled 90 minutes before the eclipse. Fox's Harris Faulkner sounds perpetually confused; now it extends to believing that Steve Wynn, Woody Johnson and Wilbur Ross "are black." And Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson says he wants to avoid stoking "division" by repeating his endorsement of Joe Biden in 2020. You know what kind of division he's afraid of, right? The division between him and those millions standing up for his country and democracy would create - the bonehead. C-Block (33:40) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: it’s another trip down memory lane; just a cassette tape from February 1977 that I found over the weekend. It contained and a sportscast I did on a radio station in Binghamton, New York I did in the middle of the night a mere 47 years ago. And oh by the way it also contained a reminder of the day 20 years later I saw a ghost and I knew who the ghost was and the ghost laughed at me and I've never told a damn soul about the ghost until now.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SERIES 2 EPISODE 153: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: On January 15th the Biden Campaign let loose the results of its internal polling. They insisted, at what was for them the nadir of the campaign, that there would be an O.S.M.… an oh-spit-moment… only they didn’t say spit… at which point the undecideds who had convinced themselves that Trump would NOT be the Republican nominee and thus they would have a different alternative, would realize Trump HAD GOTTEN the Republican nomination and… oh spit. And all the undecideds would break to Biden.  New Marquette Law School Poll, among likely voters: Biden 52 Trump 48. Likely Voters. The Marquette Law School Poll, February 15? Marquette Law School Poll: Likely Voters, TRUMP 52 Biden 48. An eight point swing in 43 days. Oh spit! B-Block (19:40) and C-Block ) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: 45 years ago at this moment, a week or so after I had met Bob Iger and got his advice on how to get started in television, the letter that would change my career and my life, was somewhere, in transit, between New York City and Ithaca, New York. The story of the man who sent it, and why what he wrote mattered so much: The Lou Adler Letter.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SEASON 2 EPISODE 152: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: He lied about it. He stole the story of a young murdered Michigan woman, purposely altered it, made himself the hero, made up a story about her family, then exploited it as an excuse to turn local cops into his private paramilitary police force. He LIED about it. OR: His dementia or aphasia or insanity or whatever it is that specifically doesn’t work right in his brain is so bad that he read about her in The New York Post and he could no longer tell the difference between what he had READ and what had actually happened - or both. The New York Post, Monday. Ruby Garcia had a: “smile that illuminated the room or contagious laughter.” Trump, Lying or Hallucinating, Tuesday: "she had just the most contagious laughter and when she walked into a room, she lit up that room, and I’ve heard that from so many people. I spoke to some of her family." The family says he did not speak to any of her family. His campaign is hiding behind a claim that it never releases the details of such conversations without permission - which is itself ANOTHER lie because it released its CLAIM that it spoke to some of her family and implied those comments came from them. There are scumbags in this world. And then there is Donald Trump. MEANWHILE "The American Conservative" piece about repealing or ignoring Presidential term limits so Trump could run again in 2028 and thereafter had an additional tendril I didn't see. Lisa Needham at Public Notice did. "The American Conservative" is part of "Project 2025" - the plan to recast the government as an anti-women, anti-minority, anti-equality body that destroys "The Deep State" and replaces it with Trump slaves personally loyal to him who would institute a DEEPER - and far more deeply INCOMPETENT - state. (21:00) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: Charlie Kirk insults a certain category of women. The one headed by his wife. Mike Davis thinks Chuck Schumer threatened to punch Justices Kavanaugh and Gorsuch or something. And so, what? Are you telling me that from once a week now my ex-SportsCenter co-anchor Sage Steele is going to be on here? Now she has revealed her 2021 ESPN interview with President Biden was entirely scripted by ESPN management, no deviations allowed, without ever realizing that all of her SportsCenter interviews were scripted by ESPN management because she was a total idiot. B-Block (29:20) and C-Block (43:47) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: 45 years ago at this moment, a week or so after I had met Bob Iger and got his advice on how to get started in television, the letter that would change my career and my life, was somewhere, in transit, between New York City and Ithaca, New York. The story of the man who sent it, and why what he wrote mattered so much: The Lou Adler Letter.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SERIES 2 EPISODE 151: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: Trump has now  threatened to federalize state and local police. His persecution of minorities starting with Latinos and moving on to blacks and middle easterners and when he runs out, Jews, will be conducted at least in part, by cops. To make THAT possible, Trump will have to take over state and local police. He promised to do as much in a speech at Grand Rapids yesterday.  And he again promised to immunize them against prosecution.  The cops – the cops in your town – on your street – will be answerable to no one but Trump. No governor, no mayor, no chief, no judge. By putting it in these terms, Trump has shown you the America he intends to sentence us to, next January 20th. There are no laws. There are no governors. There are no mayors. There are no local governments. There is only him. He has the military, he will use it on the streets against protestors; he may declare a State of Insurrection during his inaugural address, thus the protestors could be anybody – you, me, a Democratic Speaker of the House, Joe Biden, a news reporter he doesn’t like, judges who try to stop him. He will usurp the federal government and replace it with those personally loyal to him. And the first show of force will be the purge of minorities and if you belong to any minority group and spoiler alert we ALL belong to SOME minority group – you may THINK you are here legally, but if your local cop – your local TRUMP Cop, federalized by Trump, indemnified by Trump, beholden by Trump – if your local cop says no, he thinks you’re here illegally – guess where you’re going? To Trump Camp. A JUDGE is going to stop you? A JUDGE Trump appointed? A JUDGE in a red state? A JUDGE Trump didn’t appoint who knows that if he crosses Trump HE will be the next to go Trump Camp and die there – fast, or slow? And it all starts with the cops. This nation – especially its Republicans and MAGAs and fascists and racists – is riddled with snitches and fascists and sadists. And a lot of them just happen to be cops. And then there are lots of people who you would now bet your life on being there to defend you if they dragged you away and said “new rule: your grandmother can’t prove her immigration here was documented? That means YOU are no longer a citizen” – surprise. They will first worry about whether THEIR grandmother can prove it. Or if this cop knows THAT unfortunate fact about them, or their friend, or their cousin, or… or… or… It all starts with the cops 700,000 of them in 18,000 state and city units. And Trump just said he would federalize the cops. They shoot somebody? They can’t be arrested. They can’t be sued. They can’t be stopped. And for this, they have only one man to thank. Promising death and destruction and making a stochastic assassination threat against President Biden is one kind of thing. This – this is pure dictatorship B-Block (26:54) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: Even The Daily Caller has retracted, killed, and apologized for this nonsense that Biden ordered religious markings removed from White House Easter eggs. Speaker Mike Johnson? He has NOT retracted nor apologized, because he's a theocratic fascist. Fox hires a Disinformation/Misinformation specialist (for or against) and Tulsi Gabbard says she turned down RFK Jr's overtures. No! To be his VP! (Well I did too. I mean, why not, if Gabbard can say this, then you and I can also claim this is true) C-Block (36:20) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: How much would they have to pay you to fall off a cliff? A small one? What if it’s a small cliff and you don't get seriously hurt although you’ll be sore for a month? For me, the answer turned out to be like $250,000 up front. And later another $150,000. The saga of cliff diving in California. Unintentional cliff diving.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SERIES 2 EPISODE 150: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: It was a presidential kidnapping and assassination video. It showed a pickup truck, Trump flags flapping in the wind, and on its tailgate, with an illustration of President Biden bound and gagged and thrown in the flatbed. Trump posted the video and he knew what he was doing: it is a stochastic attempt to GET Biden kidnapped or assassinated.  It all makes me again ask a chilling question I first posed months ago. Had any of Trump’s various coup attempts succeeded in 2020 – if any of the coup attempts Trump is planning NOW for this election  – exactly what is Trump’s plan, or the plans of his thugs and gangs cultists and psychotics and death fetishists and militias and god-and-gun lunatics – for the ACTUAL president he usurps? Now Trump has given us the answer. Have the pick-up truck mob grab Biden and tie him up and throw him in the back of the truck. And the listless, clueless, spineless media as personified as Kristen Welker of NBC, reduces it to: “It is yet another reminder that we are covering this election against the backdrop of a deeply divided nation.” Yeah - like we were divided during the Civil War. If the media had not failed us sufficiently in this case, wait'll you hear the Trump story that wasn't merely covered poorly - it wasn't covered at all. In a move I have long anticipated, Trump minions are begin to soften up potential opposition to repealing or ignoring the 22nd Amendment's presidential term limits and dare us to stop Trump running for re-election in 2028. They have produced nonsensical sophistry in "The American Conservative" that boils down to this: because Trump would not have served CONSECUTIVE terms, the 22nd Amendment wouldn't apply to him.  Disagree? Sue him. Maybe you'll get lucky and find a different Supreme Court that will agree with you and actually defend the Constitution. If not: welcome to the Trump Dictatorship. B-Block (38:30) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: Such a pile there are EIGHT award winners. I had to expand the medal stand and hand out aluminum in addition to bronze, silver and gold. Your winners? The owner of the San Francisco Giants, the North Carolina GOP State Superintendent of Schools candidate who belongs to an organization that believes Obama is Hitler's grandson, Mayor Adams of New York, Trump's Media Company, Trump's $200 Burger Buy, Roseanne Barr, The Ohtani-deaf New York Yankees, and Representative Mike Turner. C-Block (51:42) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: I outlasted five heads of MSNBC and three chiefs of NBC News (one of them twice) and it looks like I'm about to outlast a fourth. The Ronna McDaniel Scandal continues and the fingers and figurative knives are all pointed towards the Chairman of NBC News Cesar Condé. I have my own history with him, and with the predecessor he most reminds me for pure self-absorption: Andy Lack. Their stories in an all-new edition of Countdown.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SERIES 2 EPISODE 149: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) We have a curious addition to the NBC/Ronna McDaniel timeline: Trump and the RNC fire Ronna McDaniel. 2. NBC hires Ronna McDaniel. 3. NBC fires Ronna McDaniel. 4. Trump and the RNC make a martyr OUT of Ronna McDaniel. 5. RNC threatens NBC over Ronna McDaniel. Per Politico the RNC is “weighing whether to restrict NBC’s access to this summer’s convention…’We are taking a hard look at what this means for NBC’s participation at the convention,” says a spokesperson. OK how would limiting NBC’s access to the R-N-C bullshit festival HURT NBC News? What Republicans watch NBC News? They checked out 30 years ago! So why would NBC worry? Maybe because of something Judd Legum dug up at his marvelous site "Popular Information." Of all the major corporations that vowed after January 6 to never donate to election deniers again, you know which true broadcasting company has breached its promise and donated the MOST to election deniers? Comcast/NBC. $787,500. Coincidence - no doubt. Could there be any connection between this and the fact that nobody has made headlines out of the amazing poll shift: Trump and Trump-Leaning Undecideds: 50. Biden and BIDEN-Leaning Undecideds: 50. And that's in a poll so skewed towards the Republicans (the Harvard-Harris poll) that a Harvard school paper columnist wrote about it: “Harvard Should Break Up With The Harris Poll” because the university is quote “lending its name to a methodologically flawed poll that often promotes a right-wing political agenda.” The 8% undecided lean 61% Biden including 58% of independent undecideds and 41% of Republican undecideds and that is, after all, EXACTLY what the Biden internal metrics told the president’s campaign months ago. Once Trump actually became the GOP nominee the fence-sitters would have their "oh shit" moment and break to Biden. Plus, in the Bloomberg swing states poll that America erupted over when Trump led in seven states, Biden has moved ahead in one, tied in two others, and has improved in three more. Funny that these poll results aren't as big deal as the pro-thump ones were. B-Block (22:00) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: So when they call Baltimore's mayor "The DEI Mayor" what do you think THAT'S a euphemism for? And after Larry David eviscerates Trump so Charlie Kirk has to attack Larry David and say he's a "typical kind of New York Woody Allen-type" what do you think THAT'S a euphemism for? And when a Trump-endorsed Michigan state legislator sees people getting off a plane and onto a bus with a police escort, what do you think he assumes they are? "Illegal invaders," says the guy with no neck. The correct answer is: one of the college basketball teams competing in the NCAA Sweet 16. The hatred and racism and sense of impunity with which the bigots operate was unleashed by Trump, and to stop it we have to stop him. C-Block (34:00) FRIDAYS WITH THURBER: A break from this Week of Stupid to the simpler life of a century ago at Ohio State University, when a kid with one eye is asked to draw what he sees when he looks through a microscope. "University Days."See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SEASON 2 EPISODE 148: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: The head of the POLITICAL unit at NBC News is now reported to have been actively working with the former Chief of Staff of the Republican National Committee to try to stir up a social media groundswell to save Ronna McDaniel’s job at NBC. And she – and perhaps the CHAIRMAN of NBC News as well - were reportedly willing to throw MSNBC under the bus - specifically, willing to throw its ex-Biden-Press-Secretary, now budding star Jen Psaki, under the bus, and throw Chuck Todd under the bus, in hopes of saving Ronna McDaniel. Puck News is reporting that after Ronna McDaniel debuted on “Meet The Press” on Sunday and after Kristen Welker told the audience she had no say in McDaniel’s hiring and after Chuck Todd attacked the hiring, NBC News Chairman Cesar Conde and Vice President Carrie Budoff Brown were unnerved, but both quote “seemed to anticipate the impending insurgency and frantically tried to pre-empt it. On Sunday, Budoff Brown reached out to McDaniel’s aide and former chief of staff at the RNC Richard Walters, to see if there were any friends or colleagues who could speak up on her BEHALF. The two sides also discussed having those folks call attention to what they saw as a double standard – after all this was the same network that was turning Psaki… into a Maddow-adjacent prime time star. Walters later assured Budoff Brown that they’d been able to advance conservative pushback on social media against (Chuck) Todd, specifically, and that this might give NBC News some cover, for which Budoff Brown thanked him,” unquote. The report - and a similar story by The Hollywood Reporter - also highlights MSNBC President Rashida Jones's role in hiring McDaniel, and raises questions about Kristen Welker's on-air denial that she was at all involved in the hiring (it says she was AT a meeting at which Budoff Brown continued to pitch McDaniel). It's a disaster, it's still unfolding, and there's no telling how many different NBC News executives will follow McDaniel out the door. B-Block (28:19) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: First Maria Bartiromo blamed the Baltimore bridge collapse on "wide open borders." Now she wants to make sure no money is allocated to rebuild it. James Comer claims Merrick Garland and The Deep State are indoctrinating people into believing he has no evidence against Biden. And Sage Steele, with whom I once co-anchored SportsCenter, says the devil tried to keep her from speaking out against liberals by hitting her in the mouth with a golf ball. C-Block (40:30) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: Okay, the still-evolving Ronna McDaniel scandal is a doozy. But this is NOT NBC/MSNBC's worst crisis ever. Let me take you back to the thrilling day of Existential Challenge when the Chairman of GE was ready to shut the network down, pay everybody off, and fire all of us, because his Mommy had seen Bill O'Reilly criticize him on Fox, because of what I said about O'Reilly on MSNBC. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SEASON 2 EPISODE 147: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: Those were Trump's marbles he just lost. At 2:49 PM, Eastern Dementia Time: “I’m not running to terminate the ACA, as crooked Joe BUDEN… DIS-INFORMATES and MIS-INFORMATES all the time, I’m running to CLOSE THE BORDER..." There is no such word as “Disinformate.” There is also no such word as “MIS-informate.” Also, unless I've been getting it wrong since 1973, "BUDEN" is not how the president spells his name. Trump's cheese has slid off his cracker. It is impossible to say that he cannot possibly last like this,  what with the forces of aphasia and dementia and narcissism and head injury and whatever else there is, pulling him apart… but of course he’s lasted in approximately this same space for months now – and in spaces not really that much BETTER than this one for years and decades and if the early anecdotes are correct, a lifetime. Still: inventing your own words, is a sign of a dozen different PHYSICAL problems, to say nothing of psychological ones like bipolarity and environmental ones like huffing D-Con Roach Room Fogger. HELP ME RONNA, HELP HELP ME RONNA: And now she belongs to the ages. Five days, one show. Not the shortest tenure in television history nor the fastest-cancelled program (still held by an ABC comedy show from 1969, cancelled just before the first commercial). But NBC's decision to ax Ronna McDaniel - no matter how tortured, self-serving, and late the protests from its stars might have been, does offer some small hope. The point of all this – and perhaps the value of this internal rebellion – is that perhaps the somnambulant American political media, especially the American TELEVISION political media – has awakened from its naïve stupor. I have been saying here for eighteen months that EVERY news organization in this country has had the same meeting: what do we do if Trump regains power. Not “what do we do journalistically” but what do we do to protect our profits – and what do we do so when Trump starts jailing reporters and TV executives, he’ll leave us alone. Or, more realistically, he’ll let us become one of his propaganda channels. Remember, in the minds of its executives, television news isn’t a kind of NEWS, it’s a kind of TELEVISION. It is designed to fill the places between the commercials. If it serves some kind of public purpose, hey, great, as long as that doesn’t mean we have to go TOO many hours cancelling all those advertisements just because some POPE died or something. Putting Trump on and taking Mehdi Hasan off and hiring Ronna McDaniel was INOCULATION, nothing more, nothing less. It was proving to Trump and the MAGAs that while no, we aren’t shuttering MSNBC and we’re not in favor of this whole “end the peaceful transfer of power” and “fascism is the new democracy” stuff – hey, go on… we’re listening. American TV news isn’t going to save us from creeping fascism. But maybe – MAYBE – the scattered, largely selfish, righteous-ehhh-kinda righteous indignation at NBC means American TV news will stop HELPING fascism creep faster. Guard rail? No. Scattering spike strips across democracy’s highways? Uhh, ok, maybe we’ll stop. Also, I sing. I mean: "Help Me Ronna"? I was supposed to RESTRAIN myself from THAT? B-Block (30:57) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: Congressman Tim Burchett sued by the Kansas City man he claimed was a) a Super Bowl parade shooter and b) an "illegal alien." He was neither. Ari Fleischer actually slams Biden for supporting George W. Bush's war in Iraq that Ari helped sell to a gullible America. And Maria Bartiromo, Nancy Mace, David Sabatini, Matt Schlapp, Glenn Thrush and a random named Rose Graham share the honors for spreading conspiracy theories about the Baltimore bridge accident. C-Block (42:00) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: I mentioned those tortured anti-Ronna comments from MSNBC. Lawrence O'Donnell was astonishingly wrong in his recap of how TV news in the old days didn't reward, say, Nixon's Watergate conspirators with gigs (other than Pat Buchanan, John Ehrlichmann, Robert Bork, Gordon Liddy, plus Ollie North from Iran-Contra and a series of ice cream commercials for Ehrlichmann). Since I've brought him up, I might as well tell you what a schmuck he is,  Like when he guest hosted Countdown and while I was out a few weeks, he tried to get me fired so he could take over the show and when that didn’t work he just stole a couple of the producers and got his own show. Oh, by the way, I WAS away for a couple weeks because my Dad was dying.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SERIES 2 EPISODE 146: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANNA-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: Sure, the split legal decisions in New York courtrooms matter. Trump got a brief reprieve in the business fraud case ($500 million bond reduced to $175 bond, he gets an extra 10 days grace; but his son said even a $15 million bond was almost impossible) but the Stormy Daniels election hush money case starts as scheduled April 15. But in the span five hours, Trump posted a psalm he claimed to have "received" from somebody in which he was compared to Christ, and said that he would have to sell his "babies" due to Judge Engoron, and he announced to an uncomfortable crowd of reporters "You can’t have an election in the middle of a political season." He's NUTS. Besides which, I always thought he'd decide he was not Jesus but Napoleon. RFK JR'S NEVADA OOPSIE: He celebrated getting enough signatures to be a Trump stalking horse on the ballot there. Then somebody noticed that your petitions have to mention just not the presidential candidate but the VICE presidential candidate. And he's not announcing who that is until today. He has to refile all the signatures. Hopefully the likely Veep, the ex-wife of the founder of Google who wanted a divorce settlement of a billion, can front RFK Jr the cash. THE CONTINUING RONNA McDANIEL DISASTER: No, Maddow didn't stop it last night. She could've stopped it last week, or last month if she'd stood up and threatened to quit when her bosses overruled her - live on the air - and reversed her dictum that MSNBC would not carry Trump speeches live. And no, MSNBC's president did NOT say McDaniel won't appear on the network. And no, Chuck Todd didn't put himself at risk by speaking out. And no, don't even get me started about Joe Scarborough.  In the old days we used to have a more direct way of stopping such subversions of journalism. I threatened to quit, on the spot, at least twice. Rachel did it at least once. Scarborough used threats on a regular basis. Brokaw did it.  Ultimately the problem is: people paid big salaries to make essential decisions about the coverage of an election that will decide whether or not we still have a democracy next January, thought she was a GREAT HIRE. And nice as the protests from Todd and Welker and “Golly I hope they reconsider” Scarborough were, bluntly, the moment the hiring of Ronna Romney McDaniel was announced, MSNBC anchors and producers and writers, and NBC NEWS anchors and producers and writers, should have literally walked off the job. Gone on strike. Because it comes down to this: the hiring of Ronna McDaniel didn’t represent some kind of political balance. It conceded – STIPULATED – that there can be some kind of balance, some kind of yes-but, some kind of bothsidesism, between the reality of the 2020 election, and election deniers and the Trumpist cult. She IS the flat earther, the climate change denier. She might as well be Q from Q-Anon. She is reality, trying to appease hallucination and mental illness in hopes of making… more… money. Her presence as an NBC News employee LEGITIMIZES the election deniers and the conspiracy theorists… and Trump. It is an act of journalistic self-defenestration and – for the future democracy in this country – an act of self-immolation. B-Block (30:50) IN SPORTS: Shohei Ohtani makes it worse: nobody has explained the money transfer to the bookie. Now the NBA has a burgeoning scandal: the fringe player who everybody placed "prop bets" on (33:40) POSTSCRIPTS TO THE NEWS: The sad post-mortem for Flaco the Central Park Owl, and farewell to Bill Jorgensen. (50:50) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: Rece Davis isn't actually one of them but his dry sense of humor created another mini-sports wagering mess at my alma mater. Now we know what Jeff Yass bought Trump with. And Charlie Kirk wants to use machine guns and whips at the border. C-Block (57:00) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: Since I've asserted that the NBC News/MSNBC protest over Ronna McDaniel is tepid compared to the Him-Or-Me ones we had in the 2003-11 era, I'll tell you everything I know about them. It stars Tom Brokaw, John McCain, Scarborough, Michael Savage, Chris Hayes, Maddow, me, and a cast of thousands. Pull up a chair: it takes 27 minutes.  See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SEASON 2 EPISODE 145: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: His Republican minions in the House thought releasing the previously unreported January 6 Committee transcript of an interview with a White House valet would help the desperate need to "prove" Trump tried to stop January 6th. Instead it shows that he was told that Ashli Babbitt had been shot in the chest and he did and said nothing and now he uses her at his fascist rallies and his inhumanity and selfishness is more apparent than ever. The testimony also shows Trump thought to call General Mark Milley and then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi about the National Guard (the GOP will play that part up) and then... didn't (the GOP will ignore that part). And it details how he threatened Mike Pence that morning and even as the coup failed his only concern was himself, and how Pence "let me down." It is an amazing self-own by Trump's congresswhores. ALSO the NY Attorney General has begun the paperwork to seize at least one Trump property, the NYC DA says that 100,000 page document dump is virtually irrelevant to the case and trial should begin April 15. And Merrick Garland makes a jackass out of himself yet again. (16:46) THE SHOHEI ME THE MONEY SCANDAL: Yesterday, I said they had to answer – as quickly as possible – the old Watergate cliché: What did Shohei Ohtani Know And When Did He Know It? Since then, the actions of Ohtani and his representatives and the Dodgers and Baseball (keeping Ohtani away from the press; insisting there's no MLB investigation) have QUINTUPLED the number of questions that must be satisfied as quickly and thoroughly as possible: WHY have you issued two or maybe three different official versions of this story; HOW could Ohtani have acknowledged he sent the bookie four and a half million dollars then insist the money had been stolen from him AND then insist he knew nothing about any of this; HOW long did the TEAM know about this disaster; IS the interpreter just trying to take the fall for Ohtani; WHY did a Dodgers source remind ESPN that whatever happened, it happened when Ohtani was playing for the Angels (the answer is: the Dodgers are covering their asses if Ohtani goes down); and maybe most saliently: the fired translator Mizuhara told ESPN his annual salary was between 300-thousand and 500-thousand dollars. What kind of self-respecting bookie would let a guy with THAT level of income, run up four and a half million dollars in unpaid gambling losses? B-Block (28:19) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: The Tampa Bay Rays spoil it. The pitcher for whom they just traded will NOT become Joe Rock of The Rockies. A Republican congressman retweets the GOP's favorite news source: Russian State TV. And Liz Harrington thinks Peter Navarro can appeal the Supreme Court's verdict to...Jesus. (Jesus!) C-Block (36:00) FRIDAYS WITH THURBER: It's the start of another baseball season (and maybe another baseball scandal of biblical proportions!) so let's celebrate with Thurber's epic mixture of Brooklyn Dodgers Play-by-Play and the jujitsu of the little man: The Catbird Seat.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SERIES 2 EPISODE 144: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: Trump’s lawyer in the case is refusing to deny that Trump is trying to get somebody from Russia or Saudi Arabia to pay off or guarantee or underwrite the $464 million he has to pay the state of New York by Monday, or begin to see the Attorney General seize his property in the state. Fox asked Alina Habba point-blank if they had sought it from foreign sources and she made up some crap about rules and regulations and strategy and then swerved to a word salad about election interference instead of the one and only correct answer: NO EFFING WAY! Trump, still pre-trial on 33 charges of mishandling classified documents and American government secrets, and already charged with espionage, has just handed the Biden Administration an excuse to deny him the traditional candidate National Security Briefings. It would be safer for the government to give him the half billion dollars he needs, then to give him the secrets he could SELL for half a billion. MEANWHILE the jig is up at the House Perpetual Unending Non-Impeachment Hearings. Lev Parnas accused literally everybody from Senator Ron Johnson to Sean Hannity to Putin of being behind the crap he gathered for Rudy Giuliani. The Republicans' only remaining witness who isn't in jail was good enough to be unable the simple question: What crime did you see Joe Biden commit. THE CRIME IN LOS ANGELES IS ILLEGAL SPORTS GAMBLING: First Shohei Ohtani's friend and translator said he'd screwed up and Ohtani had covered his gambling debts. Then Ohtani's lawyers said, no, the translator had stolen the money ($4,500,000 by ESPN's account). The Dodgers fired the translator and authorities are investigating. But this isn't some low-level clown. He's been perhaps Ohtani's best friend in this country since 2017 and once quit his job rather than being denied the chance to work with Ohtani for a few weeks during a labor lockout. Baseball certainly has an Ohtani-Adjacent Illicit Gambling Crisis. It might conceivably have an Ohtani Himself Illicit Gambling Crisis. B-Block (28:30) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: Lauren Boebert becomes the latest GOOPER to vote against a spending bill then claim credit for it (get a grip on yourself). Fox's Eric Shawn again shows he has something on his bosses, bless him. And Ohio Republican Derek Meyer screwed up and conceded early. Why are we mocking him? HE'S A REPUBLICAN WHO CONCEDED AND DIDN'T CLAIM RIGGING OR THAT HE WAS HACKED OR IT'S WOKE! C-Block (37:25) THINGS I PROMISED NOT TO TELL: By coincidence I was recently asked to help the grandchild of the guy who bought the radio network at which I had my second job. This not only means I'm REALLY old, it also means I have to tell you the great tales of the place including the time we desperately needed George Steinbrenner to be an anonymous source for a story, couldn't find him, and on my walk home, I turned a corner and there he was, literally shouting the exact information we needed from him!See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
SEASON 2 EPISODE 143: COUNTDOWN WITH KEITH OLBERMANN A-Block (1:44) SPECIAL COMMENT: First Trump accused the Democratic Party of hating Israel. Then he proclaimed "any Jewish person that votes for Democrats hates their religion. They hate everything about Israel" and said "Israel will be destroyed." If that wasn't enough antisemitism, late yesterday Trump doubled down on it, reminding us he has previously shown he assumes that the oldest trope is one he assumes to be true: that Jews are loyal first to Israel or their religion and anything else - like America - last. It is that one central piece of Trump's personality from which prejudice and pogroms and holocausts can spring.  We already know of his praise for Hitler, and his first wife saying he kept a book of Hitler's speeches in a bedside table. And before you drift off on this topic, Trump introduced NEW Hitler ploys as recently as this past weekend. The whole “January 6 Hostages” is just a replay of how a pre-empowered Hitler used to talk about Nazi party members who’d been jailed and his reverence for Ashli Babbitt is just a replay of Hitler’s constant invocation of Horst Wessel (shot by the Communists) and the idea of having a second National Anthem is just the co-anthem of Germany until 1945: The Horst Wessel Song. ALSO: Trump's "Presidential Immunity" argument to the Supreme Court? It's now been filed, and it boils down to one idea: you can't prosecute an ex-president because no ex-president has ever been prosecuted. By that logic, you can't elect a Republican president to non-consecutive terms because we've never done that. AND: Trump has now dismissed Mike Pence's announcement that he would not endorse him. We shouldn't, largely because of Rule 6, The Stalin Rule, in the "Seven Rules for Dealing With Autocrats and their Enablers" by the international democracy advocate and trainer Trygve Olson. AND BAD POLL, OR FIRST WAVE? Six weeks ago Florida Atlantic University's survey had it Trump 45 Biden 41. Now? Biden 47 Trump 45. Because, as the Biden campaigners insisted would happen, a lot of independents and undecideds just realized Trump really IS the Republican nominee. B-Block (22:16) THE WORST PERSONS IN THE WORLD: He looks like he hasn't slept in 25 years but sometimes Mark Levin is the funniest man alive: his Trump questions that he doesn't realize he's answering by asking them. CNN has the latest programming innovation: Bill Maher Friday re-runs in Saturday primetime! And Nick Kristof thinks The New York Times needs more conservative columnists and conservative Letters to the Editor because nobody told him conservatives want to arrest him and the rest of the liberals there and oh by the way "Letters to the Editor" were last a thing in 1999. C-Block (39:10) THINGS I NEED TO REMIND YOU OF: This Saturday is the anniversary of Trump's most recent binge of stochastic terrorism. It began with Alvin Bragg, rang through the lives of Jack Smith and Arthur Engoron and now, me. This is Trump's doing, and I'll say it yet again: he needs to be charged with domestic terrorism, convicted, and jailed for the rest of his life.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
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Comments (107)

No Name

Why haven't you commented on the idiot ari Melberg interview with Michael Avenati. What a joke.

Apr 11th
Reply

Adam Balogh

olberman is a fucking loser dumb american fuck you !!! ass hole !!!

Mar 12th
Reply (6)

Adam Balogh

orban victor is NOT a dictator you stupid dumb American mother fuckefucking dumb ass !!! i live in hungary you dumb american scumbag !!!

Mar 12th
Reply

Bob Knudsen

I didn't know how much I missed live KO until this.

Mar 8th
Reply

Adam Balogh

Boy !!! trump is fucked up as hell !!! damn we b fucked if that piece of shit gets fucking elected !!!

Mar 5th
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Joan Panzella

For me and others in my world, Richard brought so much kindness, and a unique sense of ticklish irony to our lives. Some of us directly knew it, like you Keith, some of us, smiled, giggled up a storm, and yes, Laughed Our Arses Off too in its delightful wake. I'm with you Keith, I don't say goodbyes as they don't work for me. I'm more in line with Roy Roger's theme song. " Happy Trails to You" ..... (until we meet again) Happy trails, Richard, you're one of the good ones .... 🥲🤗🥳

Feb 29th
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William Bartlett

My condolences on your loss. I, too, had a non-familial "brother" who died of ALS 10 years ago. Not a day goes by that I don't think of him.

Feb 29th
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Guy Michaud

My condolences to you and so sorry for your loss..😔🇨🇦

Feb 29th
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A M C Casiday

I'm surprised Van Jones doesn't end up among the Worst People in the World more often.

Feb 27th
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A M C Casiday

"Fridays with Thurber" is one of the best things going.

Feb 23rd
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Joan Panzella

Tipping point, anyone?! 😉☀️😎⚖️

Feb 21st
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A M C Casiday

Excellent episode. I know little about baseball, so for me the historical commentary on baseball is fascinating. Also, I am sick of death of the crazy shit Trump says.

Feb 21st
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Rick Wallace

Keith you obviously missed this one in claiming various media misquoted Hur. The Executive Summary clearly states "President Biden willfully retained .... ." There is no " did not" or any negative proceeding the quoted part.

Feb 13th
Reply (1)

Ron Cunningham

AND that Clarence the Corrupt didn't disclose the 650k she got from the Heriage Foundation

Feb 11th
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Ron Cunningham

Season 1 of The Newsroom had a scene discussing Ginni Thomas and Citizens United.

Feb 11th
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Adam Balogh

love the podcast !!!! more roger clemens stories please !!! actually more Yankees stories please !!! no matter how insignificant it might seem !!! love all the scoop about the Yankees!! thanks !!!!

Feb 11th
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Joan Panzella

Thank You, Keith. Your words uniquely defibrillate goodness and all that radiates from it.

Feb 9th
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Sheila

What's sad is that you thought our corrupt SC would follow the Constitution. I was pretty sure that's how it would shake out.

Feb 9th
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Joan Panzella

OMG! *Love* the theme from the Trump trials, "91 Trombones"! What a hoot! delightful! brilliant! I have another one of my sneaking suspicions that Frank Zappa is smiling somewhere if/when this clever music says Hi! to him! 😎🥸😉

Feb 8th
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Joan Panzella

I'm writing this on Tues. 02/06/2024, Keith. I still have the sneaking suspicion that someone, somewhere, in the present administration, considers your gathered data and ideas on everything re: saving democracy. 🤔👍 Biden will be publicly addressing the Senate border bill today! And, this morning in a 3-0 decision, *no immunity* for 45*! ⚖️🗽🇺🇸🎉🎊

Feb 6th
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