Skip to comments.Keith Olbermann Complained To Current TV That Car Service Drivers ‘Smelled, Talked To Him’
Posted on 03/31/2012 1:06:52 PM PDT by LdSentinal
On the heels of Countdown host Keith Olbermanns firing from Current TV, the network and sources close to it have been quick to buttress their case for the dismissal with details of the temperamental stars antics. One such source tells Mediaite, among other things, that Olbermann went through 8 different car services (he doesnt drive), and complained to the network that some of the drivers smelled, and talked to him, the latter detail echoing a leak that once dogged then-Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain.
Earlier, Howard Kurtz tweeted that he was Hearing allegation that Olbermann switched car cos and vendors because Current didnt pay the bills, which Olbermann retweeted, but our source says that is not true, that Kurtz has been contacted about the item, and that no one else at Current has had this issue.
The network fired Olbermann for what it says is breach of contract, citing unauthorized absences from work, failure to promote the network, and disparagement of the company and its executives.
In a statement following his dismissal, Olbermann said that the claims against me implied in Currents statement are untrue, and complained that the network didnt keep its promises and obligations and investing in a quality news program.
But according to our source, Olbermanns set, which was designed by production designer Jim Fengagen and cost about a quarter of a million dollars, was built to Olbermanns specifications. When the set experienced some lighting problems in December, however, Olbermann not only refused to use the set, he ordered his crew not to use it even for guest hosts.
While Olbermann is threatening legal action, and Im no lawyer, its tough to see how he has anything more than a balsawood leg to stand on, at least where his central complaint is concerned. Even the most casual observer, when faced with his gripe that the network wasnt spreading the cheddar around, would have to say What did you expect?
Olbermann went into this knowing that Current was pushing all of its chips (literally and figuratively) in on him, and that there would be some lean times for the network (not for Olbermann, who reportedly received about $50k per show) while they built their schedule, and their audience. Olbermann even acknowledged as much on a press call hyping the re-launch of Countdown, discussing the ways in which the network would work around its lack of resources with elbow grease and adaptability. For him to wake up a few months later and say Wheres the money, honey? (even as his pockets were stuffed with it) smacks of bad faith. Ditto the kabuki scheduling theater he engineered over the networks coverage of the Iowa caucuses in January.
In addition to hissy fits about the car service and the set, the network says Olbermann refused to promote the network. According to our source, that included not allowing Current to promote the show when he was absent (almost half the time in January and February), the guest host or the program, including barring staff from sending out Twitter updates, and not allowing the guest host to promote the program.
They also say he refused to be in promotional material that included either Cenk Uygur or former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, or their shows, and wouldnt mention either of them on his own show. Behind the scenes, network executives have praised the surprising ratings success of Countdowns lead-in and lead-out programs, which at the time, sources said, didnt necessarily sit well with Olbermann. If he felt threatened by these successes, he may have been right: Days before he was fired, Current learned that The Young Turks has been beating him in the key 25-54 demographic, while execs have been citing strong audience retention by Granholm and Keiths fill-ins.
Olbermann plans to counter Currents PR offensive with an appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman on Tuesday, but its unclear how much good it will do, or who the audience for that even is. The last time Olbermann was fired, the story dominated the news cycle for days, and generated significant traffic for this site. Last night, the news of Olbermanns firing was eclipsed (by more than double) by Piers Morgans interview with Touré.
That same question can be said of Current, but given the performance of Olbermanns stablemates of late, theyre no worse off without him, and a good deal more flush.
Hmm.....maybe. I'll bet the real answer is that he allowed himself to become permanently traumatized by that car accident, and developed a phobia about driving cars.
My mom did the same thing after an accident she was in. There was nothing physically or neurologically wrong with her. She just blew the incident up so large in her mind, that she created a fear of driving that was orders of magnitude outside of what actually happened to her.
After years of gentle prodding and support from the kids, she eventually overcame it.
they have no viewers, they are propped up by money funneled though big donors using AlGore as a magnet. Because they have no viewers, they have no reliable source of income and no money to support “talent”.
Like MESSNBC, they need someone to subsidize their efforts because their product is not popular enough to turn a profit. I’m not sure Comcast can afford to keep MESSNBC much longer because it’s a money pit.
ooo - that would be nasty!
I"m trying to imagine that (after having it intermittently for decades only to have it stick in ON position after minor surgery.)
You just have to quit the wheat, barley and rye.
I’ll mention here also in case keith only sees this thread. Keith, you are a typical 1 percenter.
Is there anyplace left for this great talent to go?
I hadnt even heard of Current TV before this. LOL.
No one has.
One aspect I find really entertaining about this is the position of Current TV, that they provide an alternative to corporate-based news. Current TV IS a corporation. They made a corporate decision in terminating Olbermann. And as I posted, it was based in part on economics. Yet they put up a front and their minions will happily believe.
!!I BELIEVEEEEEEE!! ...because I want to beleive.
They’ve already decided on Spitzer.
Olbermann is a microcosm of the progressive left. He considers himself above it all, the most intelligent and in control (or should be...). That’s probably why so many of them enjoy watching him; he’s displaying their personal attributes.
What an elitist snob.
“I wonder if this whole kerfuffle is artificial, a kind of current events theater designed to boost ratings for a show thats so far down below the basement the moles cant even find it.”
An early April Fool’s Day prank that couldn’t wait a couple of days on?!
“Overbite” (as Levin calls him), the village idiot.