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I wrote http://www.examiner.com/x-234-Baltimore-History-Examiner~y2008m11d10-Keith-Olbermann-and-the-uses-and-misuses-of-McCarthyism from behind enemy lines in the (once) Free State
Anyone who watches Countdown with Keith Olbermann, (those who don’t end up throwing a brick at the television anyway) knows that the execrable Olbermann fancies himself a contemporary Edward R. Murrow. Olbermann uses the legendary newsman’s signature signoff—goodnight and good luck and excoriates the Joe McCarthys of our time, with his juvenile “Worst Person in the World” schtick. Of course, these “McCarthyites” are merely folks, who dare to disagree with the former ESPN score reader.
Watching Olbermann’s frothing inanity begs two questions:
- Is Olbermann on crack?
- Does Olbermann know anything at all about McCarthyism?…
The next time Olbermann invokes the memory of Edward R. Murrow. Remember this: Murrow’s impetus to take on Joseph McCarthy was the senator’s accusation that State Department official Laurence Duggan, a friend of Murrow, was a Soviet spy. Duggan’s father Stephen was Murrow’s mentor at the Institute for International Education in the 1930s. In the aftermath of the Alger Hiss case in 1948, Laurence Duggan jumped or was pushed out the window of his 16th floor office in Manhattan. Murrow vigorously defended Duggan’s integrity, turning him into a liberal martyr destroyed by “right-wing hate.” However, as the Venona decrypts reveal, Duggan was one of the most prodigious American spies for the Soviets. According to Soviet agent Boris Bazarov, Duggan had said that the only reason he stayed at his “hateful job in the State Department…was the idea of being useful for our cause.” Remember that the next time Olbermann ends one of his Special Comment screeds with, “good night and good luck.”
The delicious irony is that with all his ranting and raving Olbermann resembles more the alcoholic senator from Wisconsin, than Edward R. Murrow.