On Punditry

Is there such a thing as elevated punditry?  Or just emotionally-manipulative punditry?  This commentary from MSNBC’s most prominent bluster box is either a step above or a step below — but I honestly can’t decide which it is.

On the whole, just like his partners in punditry (Bill-O, Maher, Hannity, or Rush), I’ve always thought Keith Olbermann is a net loss for the overall good of the public dialogue.  His commentaries over the years have devolved from sharp and incisive to bitter and self-important.  On the other hand, I have always thought Olbermann and his staff have done a better job of getting their facts straight, where other pundits are more wrapped-up in their own opinions.

But here, Olbermann couldn’t help but turn a really sad story about dealing with end-of-life issues with his dad into a really vicious, seething criticism of right-wingers.  It’s moving, but it’s also predictable, and not at all constructive.

How really does Olbermann’s dad feel about this?  That his son is using his illness to make a slimy political point?  That’s not how I’d like to be memorialized on national television.

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