Friday, April 30, 2010

'Countdown with Keith Olbermann' for Friday, April 30th, 2010
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Video via MSNBC: Twitter Report and Oddball, Worst Persons

Fridays with Thurber:
The Night The Bed Fell
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Guests: Richard Wolffe, Kyrsten Sinema, Markos Moulitsas



KEITH OLBERMANN, HOST (voice-over): Which of these stories will you be talking about tomorrow?

The fishermen returning to port in Louisiana can smell it, the smell of a destroyed oil rig still spewing 200,000 gallons a day - the smell of "drill, baby, drill."


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The local economies and livelihoods of the people of the Gulf Coast, as well as the ecology of the region, are at stake.


OLBERMANN: The smell of ecological disaster. High tide is likely to push the oil slick Sarah Palin over the protective booms into the inlets, lakes and even ponds of southwestern Louisiana.

And with unimaginable gall, the governor who mocked federal monitoring of possible disaster sites asks the Obama administration to pay for 6,000 Louisiana national guardsmen to help with his disaster.

And another governor doubles down: Jan Brewer appointed by God to fight not just the brown people but also -


GOV. JAN BREWER (R), ARIZONA: Arizona has been under terrorist attacks, if you will, with all of this illegal immigration.


OLBERMANN: The legislature amends the bill. State Representative Kyrsten Sinema says they've made it worse. She joins us.

The chicken lady flip-flops again. First, Nevada senatorial challenger, Sue Lowden, said bartering chickens for health care should be encouraged by the GOP. And then she said she never meant it as policy. Now, she says, "Bartering is not a policy - it is a fact." So are her plummeting poll numbers versus Harry Reid.

"Worsts": the Ohio Democrat who asks about his Indian-American Democratic rival, "You really think a guy with a name like that has a chance of ever being elected?"

And new tonight, doubling your "Worsts" with three more of them exclusively on Twitter.

And "Fridays with Thurber": "The Night the Bed Fell."

All the news and commentary - now on Countdown.



OLBERMANN: Good evening from New York.

Few will have forgotten the images of the birds. The estimated quarter of a million birds killed when the Exxon Valdez ran off the coast of Alaska two decades ago.

Our fifth story on the Countdown: More than a week after an oil rig explosion in the Gulf of Mexico prompted an environmental disaster with the potential to eclipse the Exxon Valdez, the crisis has reached its first bird, a young Northern Gannet, found offshore today at Fort Jackson, Louisiana, about 70 miles southeast of New Orleans. Normally white with a yellow head and long, pointed beak, this was Northern Gannet was black. Its feathers covered in thick dark oil.

The National Weather Service predicting heavy winds and high tides through Sunday, which could complicate efforts to hold back the massive oil slick threatening to coat as many as 400 different species of birds, marine and animal life, in effect, an entire hurricane of oil bearing down upon the Gulf Coast tonight.

Engineers are still trying to figure out how to stop the well from spewing some 5,000 barrels of oil per day deep underwater, a task complicated by the fact that much of the oil rig platform is now at the bottom of the Gulf itself.

The well's purportedly failed safe mechanism, a so-called blowout preventer, which was supposed to shut off the oil flow in an emergency, so far, has done no such thing. Teams now drilling a relief well to decrease pressure and slow the leak - that is the good news. The bad news is: finishing the relief well could take three months.

Interior Secretary Salazar is naming the effort to seal the wellhead and cleaning up the oil spill the top priorities.


KEN SALAZAR, INTERIOR SECRETARY: I've asked other companies from across the oil and gas industry to bring their global expertise to the situation, to make sure that no idea that is worth pursuing is not pursued. We cannot rest and we will not rest until B.P. permanently seals the wellhead and until they clean up every drop of oil.

JANET NAPOLITANO, HOMELAND SECURITY SECRETARY: As the federal coordinators overseeing B.P.'s efforts, we're here to make sure that the resources are being used wisely, and to the greatest effect, in minimizing environmental risk.


OLBERMANN: Meanwhile, today's second oil drilling rig overturning in Louisiana a shallow water rig located slightly inland floating in a navigational channel near Morgan City, Coast Guard investigators are saying that the rig is not leaking fuel - yet.

Local and federal officials with enough on their hands as it is, the Pentagon today getting its first orders to help, two Air Force planes will spray chemicals to help break up the oil slick and the Navy still planning to open its bases in Mississippi and the Florida Panhandle as staging areas, setting booms, skimmers and contractors down to the effort.

Defense Secretary Gates approving an ironic request from last year's anti-disaster preparedness spokesman, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, for the federal government to pay for 6,000 state National Guard troops. But Pentagon officials say they ultimately expect full reimbursement from the state of Louisiana.

The White House pushing back against criticism that it has not done enough and fast enough responding to the oil spill. The "Associated Press" asking in a rare moment of bipartisanship, quote, "Will this be Obama's Katrina? Should the federal and state government have done more and earlier?" Press Secretary Gibbs calling, quote, "the notion we haven't been there from the get-go badly uninformed," adding that "more than 1,800 people died in Katrina."

Senior adviser Axelrod is calling the criticism "business as usual."


DAVID AXELROD, WHITE HOUSE SENIOR ADVISER: This is always the case in Washington, that whenever something like this happens, the political speculation sets in. But the truth of the matter is we have the Coast Guard on the scene almost immediately after this accident. The deputy secretary of the interior was on the ground the next day and we've been coordinating closely with the local authorities and with the responsible party, B.P., down there to deal with this from the very beginning.


OLBERMANN: At the Rose Garden, the president is saying that his government fully prepared to meet its responsibilities, adding that the buck stops with the oil company, B.P.


OBAMA: B.P. is ultimately responsible under the law for paying the costs of response and cleanup operations. But we are fully prepared to meet our responsibilities to any and all affected communities. That's why we've been working closely with state and local authorities since the day of the explosion. There are now five staging areas to protect sensitive shorelines, approximately 1,900 federal response personnel are in the area, and more than 300 response vessels and aircraft on the scene 24/7.


OLBERMANN: President Obama putting a hold on his new offshore drilling policy until the investigation of this oil spill is complete. Mr. Obama is saying he is still committed to drilling here in the U.S.


OBAMA: I continue to believe that domestic oil production is an important part of our overall strategy for energy security. But I've always said it must be done responsibly for the safety of our workers and our environment. The local economies and livelihoods of the people in the Gulf Coast, as well as the ecology of the region, are at stake.


OLBERMANN: One half of the ticket which ran against Obama during the 2008 presidential election using the slogan "drill, baby, drill," taking to her Twitter page, to say in multiple tweets, "Having worked/lived through Exxon oil spill, my family and I understand Gulf residents' fears. Our prayers are with you. All industry efforts must be employed."

And later, "Domestic drilling: why we can still believe" - linking through to her Facebook page, where the human oil slick writes in part, "No human endeavor is ever without risk - whether it's sending a man to the moon or extracting the necessary resources to fuel our civilization. I repeat the slogan, 'drill here, drill now' not out of naivete or disregard for the tragic consequences of oil spills, I continue to believe in it because increased domestic oil production will make us a more secure, prosperous and peaceful nation."

That woman's ghost tweeter is an idiot.

Lots to talk about, thus, with MSNBC political analyst Richard Wolffe, the author of "Renegade: The Making of a President."

Richard, good evening.


OLBERMANN: The woman who first gave us "drill, baby, drill" is now claiming the phrase was actually "drill here, drill now." When a change like that occurs in the politics of this, does that indicate that the oil spill crisis has got her politically in its sights?

WOLFFE: Well, if you're asking me whether a vacuous slogan is looking even more empty now, the answer is yes. But, you know, that was no more of a serious policy or governing philosophy than "yes, we can" was. It was never going to be a comprehensive plan for this country.

And what really I think - even greater than the damage to Sarah Palin, if that's possible, even greater than that, it's the underpinnings of this energy proposal - the idea that the industry was so technologically savvy, so environmentally conscious that their assurances that all of this drilling was safe, that pristine areas or protected areas could be opened up for drilling, that whole premise has been shot to pieces here.

So, you know, the notion that drilling somehow is going to lead us to be more prosperous - well, what happens if this technology fails? And you get this environmental damage which way outweighs any kind benefit from the energy side of it. That, to me, the rationale there is what is really being undermined. Not Sarah Palin's reputation, not the slogan.

OLBERMANN: High tides, if they hit just in the right way, or in this case, the wrong way, would put B.P. oil so far inland in Louisiana as to get into ponds. As this pertains to the people who are actually elected to rule the country instead of the "drill, baby, drill-ists," not - it is - it is a bad term to use again, yet it does sum this up - are the plans to expand drilling by the Obama administration dead in the water?

WOLFFE: Well, we think the massive hedging on this - I've frankly never understood why the administration was giving up concessions to Republicans and independent voters. Let's be honest here, and to some of these geographical areas, states like Virginia, where this stuff was popular. I never understood why they were giving up concessions before they got into the very intense debate they're going to have on energy and climate change, and the legislation they still think they can get through before the midterms.

But, remember, just to come back here, this is B.P. we're talking about. This is not Exxon Mobil. This is the most environmentally-conscious and sensitive, or at least in terms of its marketing, the most environmentally-conscious oil company out there. And if they have to deal with this, then who else is going to be more responsible?

So, I think in terms of the politics, as David Axelrod said, this is very much on hold and I think it changes the balance of the debate as the administration tries to deal with this energy legislation he's trying to push through.

OLBERMANN: There are so many different political aspects of this and, obviously, the environmental ones, we'll have to see just how bad it is. It's atrocious right now, with a good chance of getting worse.

But the governor of Louisiana is the man who came on after - the equivalent of State of the Union address last year and attacks the president's stimulus plan - irresponsible, the volcano monitoring part of disaster preparedness, most memorably he attacked, before he then handed out the stimulus checks. Is there a measure of hypocrisy in now asking for federal help when something actually goes wrong when the disaster comes that he was arguing we should not be prepared for?

WOLFFE: Well, there is. But actually I would argue that every governor out there, when faced with a disaster of any calamity of this size, or even smaller, they should be out there asking for help, and asking for whatever dollars they can. So, that's the right thing to do.

The wrong thing to do was to get involved in the national politics early on when, frankly, his state needed the economic help.


WOLFFE: Never mind about disaster preparedness. He shouldn't be playing politics then, he's doing the right thing about looking after his state now.

OLBERMANN: Yes, I'm in complete concurrence with you. This is - this is the right move by that man now. And the other part was the hypocrisy.

But talking about hypocrisy, in a time when an administration has been elected in large part to reestablish regulations that were rolled back across the business board, across the industrial board, B.P. was largely allowed to call the shots on this for the first week. Is that going to change this idea of regulation? Is it going to put some momentum behind all aspects of re-regulation?

WOLFFE: Well, when we get into the investigation part of this, a critical question is going to be: How come B.P. got it wrong? Were they ignorant of the oil that was leaking out of this damaged rig? Or were they obfuscating, hiding some information somehow?

That's going to be a really critical area, because all these people who say the federal government should have done more, a lot depends on what kind of the information that we're getting in terms of the oil leaking out. That comes down to: can you trust these companies before a disaster and after a disaster? B.P.'s got a lot of questions to answer here.

OLBERMANN: Richard Wolffe, the author of "Renegade" - great thanks.

Have a great evening.

WOLFFE: Thank you, Keith.

OLBERMANN: An update on another disaster, the mine explosion at the Massey Energy owned Big Branch Mine in West Virginia, the one that killed 29 miners - NPR reporting today: the FBI is investigating that company for possibly bribing employees at the Mine Safety and Health Administration. Massey has been cited many times for safety violations and the ones prior to the explosion, including 58 violations in March - many of which were for dangerous accumulation of dust and gases thought to be directly related to the explosion.

"Associated Press" sourcing a federal law enforcement official reporting this afternoon that the FBI has interviewed nearly two dozen Massey employees, looking for criminal negligence in that explosion.

After the original report about the bribes, a federal law enforcement source told NPR that while there is an ongoing investigation, it does not include bribery of mine safety officials. NPR posted on its site that it stands by its original reporting.

The "show us your papers" law in Arizona, one of the worst overreachings by the government since the Alien and Sedition Acts, and one state representative there says tonight they have just made it worse. She joins us next.

You're watching Countdown on MSNBC.


OLBERMANN: This embattled governor has now said the undocumented immigrants who are among those attacked by the new Arizona law are guilty of, quote, "terrorist attacks."

And the state legislature amends that law making it worse - according to one member who will join us.

This would-be Nevada senator does it again. She's now running around like a chicken with its polling lead cut off. Markos Moulitsas joins us.

And you like this clown in "Worst Persons" - do you like Twitter? We're doubling "Worst Persons" as of tonight, putting half of them on Twitter. Huh? Huh?

And "Fridays with Thurber" - one of his bests: "The Night the Bed Fell."


OLBERMANN: Under fire for signing legislation that two fellow Republican border state governors have now flatly rejected, Arizona's governor, Jan Brewer, went on television today to suggest that the Obama administration is ignoring terrorist attacks in her state.

In our fourth story: The Arizona legislature has amended their "show me your papers" law, we'll talk to one member who thinks the law just got worse. State Representative Kyrsten Sinema joins me, presently.

First, last night, Arizona's House of Representatives did change some of the language in its immigration law. The original read: "For any lawful contact made by a law enforcement official where reasonable suspicion exists that the person is an alien who is unlawfully present in the United States, a reasonable attempt shall be made when practicable to determine the immigration status of the person."

The Arizona House has approved changing the term "lawful contact" to "lawful stop, detention or arrest."

Tonight, the governor has signed that change and others into law, and issued a statement saying in part, quote, "These new amendments make it crystal clear and undeniable that racial profiling is illegal and will not be tolerated in Arizona."

Earlier today, she explained to FOX News that the federal government was ignoring terrorism.


BREWER: Arizona has been under terrorist attacks, if you will, with all of this illegal immigration that has been taking place on our very, very porous border. The federal government has not stepped up to protect us and to do their job and to fulfill their responsibility.


OLBERMANN: Two of Brewer's fellow border state governors, both Republicans, are saying now they disagree with the new law. Rick Perry of Texas says Arizona's measure, quote, "would not be in the right direction for Texas." Last night, Arnold Schwarzenegger told Jay Leno, "I would never do that in California. No way."

And then there are the ongoing boycott efforts: New York Congressman Jose Serrano calling on the baseball commissioner to move next year's all-star game out of Phoenix, writing in a letter, "I think Major League Baseball, with 40 percent Latino ballplayers at all levels, should make a statement that it will not hold its all-star game in a state that discriminates against 40 percent of their people."

And the Major League Baseball Players Association today is calling for the repeal or modification of the Arizona law. Its executive director releasing this statement, "The spring homes of half of the 30 Major League teams are now in Arizona. All these players as well their families could be adversely affected even though their presence in the United States is legal."

From Casa Grande, Arizona, this just in, authorities in Pinal County there say they are searching for a deputy who radioed for help to say he had been shot in a remote desert area about 50 miles south of that city. The county sheriff is saying the deputy radioed in to say he encountered a group in the desert and had been shot with an AK-47 assault rifle in the abdomen. Law enforcement officers from across the area are trying to find the deputy who was apparently in the desert somewhere.

And there was an earlier report that have been put out by a local television station in Arizona that the suspects were suspected to be undocumented immigrants and other suspects being sought.

We'll give you more on that if there is anything to be heard.

We mentioned the viewpoint of Representative Kyrsten Sinema. She is a constitutional attorney who serves as the assistant leader of the Democratic Caucus in the Arizona state house.

Great thanks for some of your time tonight.


OLBERMANN: The changes that were made to this law that we went through were sold as preventing an opportunity for racial profiling. I gather your opinion is that they do nothing to stop racial profile something.

SINEMA: Well, that's correct, Keith. In fact, these changes actually make the law more onerous and even more unconstitutional if that can even be imagined.

OLBERMANN: And the other changes to this law - the major one is that police contact over violations for local civil ordinances can trigger questioning on immigration status. You've identified that as a major problem with this. What is the problem?

SINEMA: Well, that's the key problem because, previously, the sponsors of this legislation indicated that it was solely to apprehend people who were suspected of committing criminal acts. But now, when police officers encounter someone whose lawn is overgrown or who perhaps has a dog that's barking too loudly, they'll be required to inquire into their immigration status if they have reasonable suspicion to believe they may be undocumented. That is incredibly concerning and a massive expansion of this law.

OLBERMANN: And the change of the term, it was "lawful contact" to "lawful stop, detention or arrest," that would - to a layman, it seem like it improves the law, does it?

SINEMA: Not really, because a lawful stop is any contact that a law enforcement officer has with a resident of the state. Now, detention or arrest is different, but a lawful stop is pretty of the same as a lawful contact. So, there's not much legal significant difference there.

OLBERMANN: The two Republican governors in the adjoining states with

borders with Mexico and also with Arizona have come out against this.

Does that -

SINEMA: Right.

OLBERMANN: - say anything to you about Governor Brewer's insistence that this is a good thing?

SINEMA: Well, it certainly does. As we know, last week, Governor Richardson from New Mexico came out against this law. It's clear that Governor Brewer is acting in contravention of other officials around the border regions. And I think that this indicates that this bill is indeed overreaching, unconstitutional, and really unsafe for our community.

OLBERMANN: And what about this - we played this tape twice now. I don't think we need to play the tape again. But the quote that Arizona has been, from the governor, "Arizona has been under terrorist attacks, if you will, with all of this illegal immigration that has been taking place in our very, very porous border."

To throw out the word "terrorism," is that - is that too strong in your opinion? Is that a little strong - ridiculously strong? Where does it fit in?

SINEMA: Well, I think it's not appropriate. The fact is that Arizona is besieged by an increase in drug running, gun running, and violent human smuggling on our border regions and I and others have called for her to act on that problem - unfortunately, this bill does nothing to address that problem. In fact, she exacerbated the problem by cutting funding for local law enforcement and for our prosecutors in the state. They have less ability today than they did just a year ago to crack down on those violent criminal syndicates.

OLBERMANN: One thing we have not heard in all the coverage of this this week is what those of you who were opposed to this in the two Arizona bodies were going to do to try to prevent the law from being implemented. What's your plan?

SINEMA: Well, we are working with MALDEF, the ACLU and the National Immigrant Law Center to file an injunction. And that's fancy for saying - look, court, this bill is so unconstitutional you can't even implement it, because it will violate the rights of so many people in our state. Not just immigrants but people like me.

OLBERMANN: Kyrsten Sinema, Democratic representative in the Arizona State House - good luck with that and great thanks for your time tonight.

SINEMAN: Thanks so much, Keith.

OLBERMANN: How the Republican candidate who proposed putting a chicken in every doctor's pot did another 180 today and may, thus, be putting Harry Reid back in the Senate.


OLBERMANN: The GOP's Nevada hopeful just can't let this "chickens for health care" thing go.

First, a brief Twitter report because we will be expanding "Worst Persons" into the Twitterverse later. So, one Tweet of the Day from @MichaelClear: "I refuse to ever be your Tweet of the Day on the grounds that it's biased against people who don't use Twitter."

And that makes my head hurt.

Let's play "Oddball."


OLBERMANN: Lake Norman, North Carolina, hello! And what a previous generation of "Saturday Night Live" would have inevitably called "boat in a dock." It's a boat, it's a dock, it's boat in a dock. Need a boat but don't have a dock, get boat in a dock. It's a boat and a dock all in one. Boat in a dock!

Officials are investigating whether alcohol or possibly helium was involved in the crash. Oh, the humanity. Police said when they arrived at the accident scene, the driver of the 27-foot boat was still in it - either because he could not figure out how to leave or because no one can live without their boat in a dock! From Ramko.

In Vilnius, Lithuania, hello! You know how you go to the movies and you're sitting there and thinking, "Man, why can't I get some exercise at the same time?" No? Well, that's why you're not in Vilnius, Lithuania, where these bicycles built for view are used to power the 400-watt projector at Cinema Pasaka.

The eco-friendly art house theater uses eight bikes cycled by 20 moviegoers over the course of each film. Not a bad way to burn off the extra butter popcorn and gigundo-sized Mason Dots - at least until the opening night of "Avatar" there when everybody will have to get tanked up first on fine Lithuanian just to power to the 3D IMAX.

When you make a campaign-killing statement and your spin doctors have almost gotten you out of it, probably best not to go back and say, "No, no, I meant we should barter chickens for flu shots and stuff." The chicken lady of Nevada and her crumbling poll numbers - next on Countdown. She is plucked.


OLBERMANN: First, Republican Senatorial hopeful Sue Lowden said people should barter with their doctor. Campaign said by barter Ms. Lowden meant haggle, to which Ms. Lowden said no, I meant barter. By barter, I meant paying for your health care with chickens. Our third story in the Countdown, Nevada's chicken lady has officially flown the coup. Now says that bartering is not a policy, it's a fact.

Also a fact, Lowden's dwindling poll numbers against Senator Harry Reid. In an op-ed for "Politico," Ms. Lowden accusing Mr. Reid and the Democrats of turning this race into a zoo. "The comment I made about bartering was not, it was never intended to be a policy proposal. It was an example of how struggling families are working to pay for medical care in any way they can during these tough times."

Elaborating further on her blog, "bargaining, bartering and negotiating for health coverage is not a policy, it is a fact. Nowhere in my health reform proposal do I discuss bartering or negotiating. Rather I offer real solutions that work without creating a government-run entitlement program that Nevadan's don't want and cannot afford."

Here's what Ms. Lowden actually said. See if you think she's talking about the facts of how people pay for health care.


SUE LOWDEN, CANDIDATE FOR NEVADA SENATE: Let's change the system and talk about what the possibilities are. I'm telling you that this works. You know, before we all started having health care, in the olden days, our grandparents, they would bring a chicken to the doctor. They would say, I'll paint your house. They would do - that's the old days of what people would do to get health care with their doctors. Doctors are very sympathetic people. I'm not backing down from that system.


OLBERMANN: And now a new Research 2000 poll shows Nevada voters are backing down from supporting Lowden. Senator Reid, once trailing her by double digits, may have a shot at this thing, if Lowden makes it through the Republican primary. Reid's only down four points, 41 percent to Ms. Lowden's 45 percent. Speaking of all that, joining me now, the founder and publisher of "Daily Kos," author of "Taking on the System, Rules for Radical Change in a Digital Era," Markos Moulitsas. Markos, good evening.


OLBERMANN: And to you. What are the polls showing in Nevada? And can we tell how they have actually been affected by chicken-gate?

MOULITSAS: Yeah. Earlier this year, Reid was sort of mired in the high 30s, low 40 percent. For any incumbent, that's pretty disastrous. But even worse for him, the Republicans were all in the 50 percent range or higher, low 50 percents. You're looking at the polls in February, March, you're thinking there's no way Harry Reid is going to survive this election. He is done.

Now what you're seeing is that Sue Lowden comes out, she starts talking. Nevada voters start taking a look at her and starting to realize that maybe she's not all that she's cracked up to be. And suddenly her poll numbers are down in the mid 40s. And she seems to be bringing down all the other Republicans with her, as well. Reid is still in the low 40s. He's got a way to go. But what was a sort of foregone conclusion of a race now starts looking a little more competitive again.

OLBERMANN: By the way, I learned this many years ago, I got punched in the arm when I said it wrong. To get your credibility in that community, it's Nevada. Even though we tend to want to look at it and go and say, Nevada, just throwing that out there. There has been clucking, as it were, on cable from conservatives and other panderers that Lowden shows how weak Harry Reid really is, that he's still behind in the polls to the chicken lady. Assess that conclusion for us.

MOULITSAS: Yes, Reid is in a very weak position right now. I don't think there's any way to sugar coat that. He's in a very difficult position. Now he has a lot of money. He has a machine behind him. He's about to start hitting his Republican opponents. And we'll see if that makes a difference moving ahead.

But like I said, what used to be an almost forgone conclusion that he had no chance to win, it's suddenly a little bit more competitive again. Being in the low 40s, not that good. Being down single digits, instead of double digits, huge improvement.

OLBERMANN: Running against the chicken lady, priceless. One Nevada GOP official admitted to getting phone calls from Republicans in Washington who are wondering what's going on with Ms. Lowden. And I was watching one of the local newscasts online, and there seems to be utter amazement that nobody - even on the local level, there's an amazement that nobody on that campaign has had the presence of mind, this candidate especially, to just shut up. Isn't that the easiest solution for her at this point? Just shut up?

MOULITSAS: It would be very, very helpful for her to do so. I think that, you know, her grandmother used to trade chickens for leaches at the doctor's office, so she thinks, if it was good for her grandmother, it's got to be good for us today.

OLBERMANN: And if she serves, she'll be paid in livestock. So there you go. Eugene Robinson wrote an op-ed today, "Ms Lowden threatens to make Sarah Palin sound like some kind of pointy headed policy wonk."

If she is not outlining, in a very serious way, what is it that she's doing, if this constant barrage of information about how you can trade and barter for your health care, particularly live chickens - if that's not outlining a policy or suggestion, what is she telling this story for?

MOULITSAS: You're expecting me to be serious about that?

OLBERMANN: Yes, just a little bit. One of us needs to be for a little bit.

MOULITSAS: I truly believe she thinks this is a solution to the problem. I mean, you played the clip. She said we need to look for solutions. We need to look a way forward on how to fix this problem, and for her fixing that problem seemed to be solved in large part by bartering. And there's no other way you can possibly look at this in any serious manner, except that she truly, honestly believes it, to the core of her heart, that that's an actual solution to the problem. And I think that just shows how unserious of a candidate she actually is.

OLBERMANN: And her handlers had almost gotten her out of it, had they not, when they said she meant haggling, she didn't mean trading chickens. And she steered right back out of the mainline and back into the skid. How did she do that?

MOULITSAS: Again, I think she truly believes this. But you're right.

Her handlers had done a fantastic job of getting this almost in the past. We may have had a couple days of jokes at her expense, but it wouldn't have dragged out for weeks the way it has done now. And it's all thanks to her.

OLBERMANN: Markos Moulitsas of "Daily Kos," have a great weekend and Nevada. Thanks Markos.


OLBERMANN: We go with one of the all-time greats on Fridays with Thurber, "The Night the Bed Fell." Also the Texas congressman who compares undocumented immigrants to grasshoppers and says they should be caught in the same manner. We'll expand on his thoughts with a little worst persons. Speaking of which, worst persons now 100 percent more worsterer as we're adding the Tweeter element into it. I being the Tweeter thereof.

And when Rachel joins you at the top of the hour, the New Jersey congressman who today co-signed a letter to the president urging him, in the wake of the disaster in the Gulf, to reverse his policy of increasing offshore drilling.


OLBERMANN: "The Night the Bed Fell" by James Thurber, next. But first tonight's Worst Persons in the World. For the first time ever, we'll be doubling the list. The other three will go out exclusively on Twitter at the conclusion of the live edition of Countdown. The easiest way to get the T-worst persons, the ones who didn't quite make this list, follow me on Twitter, where I am, and this is original, @KeithOlbermann. Exclusive content for the Twitterati about 9:00 pm Eastern each night. See?

Back to this old medium TV crap. The bronze to Boss Limbaugh. People ask how he lives with himself. The answer is he clearly has no short-term memory anymore. We'll preface this with two brief clips of Limbaugh that he clearly cannot remember. August 13, 2009 -


OLBERMANN: Nobody is saying that Obama is Hitler.


OLBERMANN: And four weeks ago today, the second of April -


OLBERMANN: Who has called him a Nazi?


OLBERMANN: So are we clear? Nobody is saying Obama is Hitler, nobody called him a Nazi. Here's the latest from Limbaugh-land, the place that time and Limbaugh forgot.


OLBERMANN: One of the things that really distresses me about all of this is the way Obama is playing this. He's actually playing the race card, doing two things at one time. The communists around the world always thought that they had to play off the haves versus the have notes, class warfare. Hitler and his gang believed you did it by race. You divided people by race.

Obama is doing both. Obama is playing class warfare and dividing people on the basis of race. He's doing them both. He's out-doing whatever Hitler and any Soviet commissar ever did, because he's combing these two thing that roil and divide a culture.


OLBERMANN: Outdoing Hitler? Good thing Limbaugh never called him Hitler.

The runner up, Congressman Ted Poe of Texas. Congressman Ted Poe, super genius. He has now compared undocumented immigrants to grasshoppers.


REP. TED POE (R), TEXAS: Now, it seems to me that if we are so advanced with technology and manpower and competence that we can capture illegal grasshoppers from Brazil in the hulls of ships that are in a little small place in Port Arthur, Texas, on the Sabine River - the Sabine River, madam speaker, is the river that separates Texas from Louisiana.

If we're able to do that, as a country, how come we cannot capture the thousands of people that cross the border every day on the southern border every day? You know they're a little bigger than grasshoppers and they should be able to be captured easier. Well, maybe it's because the country doesn't have the moral will. The government doesn't have the moral will to protect the borders from people coming in. But we sure have the moral will as a nation to keep these grasshopper critters from coming in to the United States from Brazil.

Maybe we need to make the guy down there in southeast Texas that captured this grasshopper from Brazil, he ought to be in charge of Homeland Security.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And old (INAUDIBLE) is going to rattle me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now, who can argue with that?


OLBERMANN: I think we're all indebted to Congressman Gabby Poe (ph) for say what needed to be said. But our winner, David Kerkorian, the Cincinnati novelty playing cards entrepreneur, who is seeking the Democratic nomination to face the reprehensible Jean Schmidt for the house seat in the Ohio second. He is being challenged by an Indian-American, Suria Yalamanchali (ph), from Proctor & Gamble in Cincinnati, and, before that, from "The Apprentice."

If he were nominated to face Schmidt, I just don't know where Mr. Kerkorian thinks he would be finding votes. He tried to beat her as an independent two years ago and called himself a Reagan conservative. Now he's allegedly told the VFW at Claremont County, Ohio, quote, "you really think a guy with a name like that has a chance of ever being elected?" Kerkorian denies he said that about his opponent at the VFW. But an Ohio Democratic county chairman says Kerkorian said the same thing, almost word for word, to him earlier.

You know, you can't trust them foreigners. This Syria guy was born in Morristown Pennsylvania. Would-be Democratic congressional nominee David Kerkorian, today's worst person in the world.


OLBERMANN: I think by now everybody knows we finish up Friday nights here, as I used to finish up my late father's nights in the hospitals, with a quick reading from the works of the great American humorist and cartoonist James Thurber. I am, as ever, reading from the "Library of America's" tremendous 1996, "Thurber Writing and Drawings," with some slight editing for time, with the kind consent of Ms. Rosemary Thurber.

Though this classic first appeared in Thurber's masterwork, "My Life and Hard Times" from 1933, and can be found in full, unabridged there.

"The Night the Bed Fell," by James Thurber.

"I suppose that the high water mark of my youth in Columbus, Ohio, was the night the bed fell on my father. It makes a better recitation, unless as some friends have said, one has heard it five or six times, than it does a piece of writing. For it is almost necessary to throw furniture around, shake doors and bark like a dog to lend the proper atmosphere and very similitude to what is admittedly a somewhat incredible tale.

Still, it did take place. It happened then that my father had decided to sleep in the attic one night, to be away where he could think. My mother opposed the notion strongly, because she said the old wooden bed up there was unsafe. It's was wobbly and the heavy headboard would crash down on father's head, in case the bed fell and kill him.

There was no dissuading him, however. And at a quarter past 10:00, he closed the attic door behind him and went up the narrow twisting stairs. We later heard ominous creakings as he crawled into bed. Grandfather, who usually slept in the attic bed when he was with us, had disappeared some days before.

We had visiting us at this time a nervous first cousin of mine named Briggs Biel (ph), who believed that he was likely to cease breathing when he was asleep. It was his feeling that if he was not awakened every hour during the night, he might die of suffocation. He had been accustomed to setting an alarm clock to ring at intervals until morning. But I persuaded him to abandon this. He slept in my room and I told him I was such a light sleeper that if anybody quit breathing in the same room with me, I would wake instantly.

He tested me the first night, which I suspected he would, by holding his breath after my regular breathing had convinced him I was asleep. I was not asleep, however, and called to him. This seemed to allay his fears a little bit. But he took the precaution of putting a glass of Spirits of Campfir on a little table at the head of his bed. In case I didn't arouse him until he was almost gone, he said, he would sniff the Campfir, a powerful reviver.

By midnight, we were all in bed. The layout of the rooms and the disposition of their occupants is important to an understanding of what later occurred. In the front room upstairs, just under father's attic bedroom, were my mother and my brother Herman. Briggs Biel and myself were in a room adjoining this one. My brother Roy was in a room across the hall from ours. Our bull terrier, Rex, slept in the hall.

My bed was an Army cot, one of those affairs which are made wide enough to sleep on comfortably only by putting up flat with the middle section, the two sides which ordinarily hang down like the side boards of a drop leaf table. When these sides are up, it is perilous to roll too far towards the edge. For then the cot is likely to tip completely over, bringing the whole bed down on top of one with a tremendous banging crash.

This is, in fact, precisely what happened about 2:00 in the morning. Always a deep sleeper, slow to arouse - I had lied to Briggs - I was at first unconscious of what had happened when the iron cot rolled me on to the floor and toppled over op me. It left me still warmly bundled up and unhurt, for the bed rested above me like a canopy. Hence, I did not wake up, only reached the edge of consciousness and went back.

The racquet, however, instantly awakened my mother in the next room, who came to the immediate conclusion her worst dread was realized, the big wooden bed upstairs had fallen on father. She therefore screamed, "let's go to your poor father!"

It was this shout rather than the noise of my cot falling that awakened Herman, in the same room with her. He thought mother had become, for no apparent reason, hysterical.

"You're all right, ma," he shouted, trying to calm her. They exchanged shout for shout for perhaps ten seconds. "Let's go to your poor father!" And, "you're all right!" That woke up Briggs.

By this time, I was conscious of what was going on in a vague way, but did not yet realize that I was under my bed. instead of on it. Briggs, awakening in the midst of loud shouts of fear and apprehension, came to the quick conclusion that he was suffocating and that we were all trying to bring him out. With a low moan, he grasped the glass of Campfir at the head of his bead, and, instead of sniffing it, poured it over himself. The room reeked of Campfir. Yuck, choked Briggs like a drowning man, for he had almost succeeded in stopping his breath under the deluge of pungent spirits.

He leaped out of bed and groped towards the open window, but he came up against one that was closed. With his hand, he beat out the glass, and I could hear it crash and tinkle in the alley way below. It was at this juncture that I, in trying to get up, had the uncanny sensation of feeling my bed above me. Foggy with sleep, I now suspected in my turn that the whole uproar was being made in a frantic endeavor to extricate me from what must have been an unheard of and perilous situation.

"Get me out of this,: I bawled. "Get me out." I thought I had the nightmarish belief that I was entombed in a mine. "Yah," gasped Briggs, floundering in his Campfir.

By this time, my mother, still shouting, pursued by Herman, still shouting, was trying to open the door to the attic in order to go up and get my father's body out of the wreckage. The door was stuck, however, and would not yield. Her frantic pulls on it only added to the general banging and confusion. Roy and the dog were now up. The one shouting questions, the other barking.

Father, farthest away and soundest sleeper of all, had by this time been awakened by the battering on the attic door. He decided the house was on fire. "I'm coming, I'm coming," he wailed in a slow, sleepy voice. It took him many minutes to regain full consciousness. My mother still believing he was caught under the bed detected in his "I'm coming" the mournful resigned note of one who is preparing to meet his maker.

"He's dying," she shouted. "I'm all right," Briggs yelled to reassure her. "I'm all right!" He still believed that it was his own closeness to death that was worrying mother. I found at last the light switch in my room, unlocked the door and Briggs and I joined the others at the attic door.

The dog, who never did like Briggs, jumped for him, assuming that he was the culprit in whatever was going on. And Roy had to throw Rex and hold him. We could hear father crawling out of the bed upstairs. Roy pulled the attic door open with a mighty jerk, and father came down the stares sleepy and irritable, but safe and sound.

My mother began to weep when she saw him. Rex began to howl. "What in the name of God is going on here," asked father.

The situation was finally put together like a gigantic jigsaw puzzle. Father caught a cold from prowling around in his bare feet. But there were no other bad results. "I'm glad," said mother, who always looked on the bright side of things, "that your grandfather wasn't here."

"The Night the Bed Fell," by James Thurber.

That's Countdown. Tomorrow marks the seventh anniversary of the previous president announcing mission accomplished in Iraq. Portions written here by James Thurber. "THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW" is next with continuing coverage of the events in Arizona and the environmental crisis in the Gulf around New Orleans. I'm Keith Olbermann, good night and good luck.


Thursday, April 29, 2010

'Countdown with Keith Olbermann' for Thursday, April 29th, 2010
video podcast

Video via MSNBC: Twitter Report and Oddball, Tea Time, Worst Persons
Video via YouTube: Oddball, Beck steals Foley's bit

The toss: Clean-up crew

Guest: Paul Rodriguez, Sen. Robert Menendez, Howard Dean, Joe Romm, Dave Foley



KEITH OLBERMANN, HOST (voice-over): Which of these stories will you

be talking about tomorrow?

The cry gets louder.


CROWD: Arizona boycott! Arizona boycott!


OLBERMANN: The cry in Chicago - the symbols, the Arizona

Diamondbacks, ironically is the only team in baseball without a prominent

Hispanic player.

The cry in Phoenix - where the four immigrant rights advocacy groups

announced a legal challenge.

The cry at the state capitol - where Governor Brewer would not meet

with the Colombian singer, Shakira.

The cry in Washington - where Democratic senators outline border

security and rational immigration reform - and where the House minority

leader says his party believes now is the time to do nothing.

Our special guests: Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey, and comedian

and advocate, Paul Rodriguez.

The storm in the tea cup: Scalded by the tea party, the Republican

governor of Florida who polls as well as anyone in a three-horse race goes



GOV. CHARLIE CRIST (R), FLORIDA: It's your decision. It's not one

club's decision or another - or even a club within that club.


OLBERMANN: The new crisis in the Gulf. With the oil slick nearing

Louisiana, how's that "drill, baby, drill" crap working for you?



responsible for funding the cost of response and cleanup operations.


OLBERMANN: "Worsts": Ratings drop 19 percent but FOX is still

crowing, Baier, Smith, Bill-o, Mannity, Greta - isn't somebody missing?

And speaking of that - prophecy, Dave Foley, "The Kids in the Hall,"

1994. Does this remind you of anybody?


DAVE FOLEY: Communism never dies. Communism is a cancer - a cancer

sleeping, awaiting a moment to devour our freedom, to devour our democracy.

Oh, I know what you're thinking.


OLBERMANN: 1994! Our special guest, 16 years later, the man who saw

Beck coming: Dave Foley.

All the news and commentary - now on Countdown.






OLBERMANN: Good evening from New York.

A baseball fan arrived outside Wrigley Field, Chicago, for this

afternoon's Cubs game. There he saw evidently to his surprise people

protesting the new "show me your papers" law in Arizona. Arizona, where

the team the Cubs were to play, the Diamondbacks, are based - where in

evident coincidence, the only one of the 30 Major League teams without a

potential Hispanic 2010 all-star player or Hispanic future Hall of Famer is

the Arizona Diamondbacks.

The fan saw the protest, ripped up his ticket and went home.

If the micro sometimes represents the macro, the boycotts and protests

are already having impact. Advocate and comedian Paul Rodriguez and

Senator Robert Menendez join me in a moment.

First, the latest details. Only about 50 gathering outside Wrigley

today, the Diamondbacks beginning a four-game series with the Cubs. The

protesters are chanting, "Boycott Arizona," "Reform, Not Racism," "Shame on


However, organizers are expecting more than 100,000 at a march in Los

Angeles over the weekend. An immigration rights rally in that city in

2006, having drawn half a million participants. This Saturday's march is

one of 70 May Day protests being planned in cities across the country.

California Congressman Duncan D. Hunter today is elaborating,

meantime, on his suggestion that children born here to undocumented

immigrants be deported because the children's souls are not sufficiently

American. Mr. Hunter telling "The Plum Line's" Greg Sargent that his

policy is all about keeping families intact. In other words, if the

parents are deported, the kids,, even if they are natural-born citizens,

must follow. Quote, "We should empower the government to forcibly maintain

that family unit and send them with the parents back home."

I wonder how retroactive he's willing to make this.

The congressman adding he's supporting legislation that would undo the

14th Amendment to make this possible. As we like to say around here -

good luck with that.

Fellow Republican Mike Huckabee, the former presidential candidate and

former governor of Arkansas, making the analogy that for immigrants, quote,

"America is a lot like Disneyworld, and that once you get a ticket, you're

in. You don't have to keep showing your ticket to keep riding the rides.

That's the whole point of liberty."

Mayor Bloomberg of New York City is saying that Arizona's new

immigration law is not good for the country. We love immigrants here. Mr.

Bloomberg is adding his beliefs that this country is committing national

suicide, though, if federal lawmakers continue to evade tackling

comprehensive immigration reform.

President Obama is saying tonight that his administration will play an

active role in working with both Republicans and Democrats on immigration.

And earlier tonight, Senate Majority Leader Reid and fellow Democrats

unveiling what they call a framework for a sweeping overhaul of federal

immigration laws. The highest ranking Hispanic in the Senate pointing out

that this economy would likely come to a standstill without immigrant



SEN. ROBERT MENENDEZ (D), NEW JERSEY: This morning, if you had

breakfast and you had fruit for breakfast, it was probably picked by the

bent back of an immigrant worker. If you had chicken for dinner last

night, it was probably plucked by the cut-up hands of an immigrant worker.

If you have someone who is infirmed in your family, probably their daily

needs are being tended to by an immigrant worker.


OLBERMANN: In a moment, Senator Menendez will join us.

First, as promised, let's bring in comedian, actor and representative,

Paul Rodriguez, who was scheduled to headline at the Wild Horse Pass Resort

in Chandler, Arizona. He's canceled that event and he's good enough to

join us now.

Paul, thanks for your time tonight.

PAUL RODRIGUEZ, COMEDIAN AND ACTOR: You're welcome. Thank you for

having me, Keith.

OLBERMANN: I know a little bit about this. You've gone back and

forth on whether or not to perform that show. Tell me the reasons and the

thinking that went into both the debate and what you ultimately decided

about Saturday.

RODRIGUEZ: Well, it is - I got a call from the tribal members,

technically it's an independent nation, you know? And I could find many

other excuses.

But in reality, no boycott that we could possibly put upon Arizona is

going to be harder than the hotel industry, for example, it won't be us

renting the rooms, they won't find anybody to clean it. Senator Menendez

is absolutely right. The farming industry - who's going to pick it?

Let's be realistic.

The federal government has to face this up. Now, Arizona, and like

every other state, has perfect rights to curtail the illegal immigration.

And I want to make this clear.

We, those of us, we are not for illegal immigration. Our protest is

that this law is too broad. This law - would Montana pass this same

thing, to restrict Canadians coming over? What is an illegal alien look

like? Is the police going to have the power to stop someone for anything,

for any particular reason?

I read it, paragraph "E," it says that a law officer, without a

warrant, can stop you, if he suspects you are in this country illegally.

That's too broad.

We agree that Arizona's going through a terrible situation. And if

the governor, Brewer - if she did this to bring national attention -

she's done a good job and I applaud her for that. But this law won't do.

We're not going to allow this to become second class citizens.

Every time there's an economic pinch, Hispanics, Mexican-Americans to

be more precise, we're the whipping boys. That ain't going to happen.

We're more numerous than African-Americans. You've got to remember, many

of us have status in this country and we're going to speak up when we can.

OLBERMANN: And you've lived that immigrant experience in this

country, the good parts of it and the bad parts of it. What Arizona has

done is obviously the worst of it in terms of people who are here.

How representative do you think Arizona is of all of your experiences?

I mean, those who got here earlier than you did - are they mostly more

sympathetic and empathetic than the people who passed this law?

RODRIGUEZ: Well, I think that people are sympathetic to the needs.

Look, I've been through Douglas, Arizona, and I've seen pictures that the

police have shown me of people who have literally died of thirst. I mean,

the devil's highway. It's a terrible situation.

But let us remember why they're coming. They're being attracted here

by cheap labor. They're being attracted here by the farming industry.

They're being attracted - look, if we can - if North Korea and South

Korea can have an airtight border with nobody crossing over there, and I'm

not saying to those extremes, grenades and stuff like that, or bombs or

landmines or anything like that, but if they can have an airtight border,

we certainly have the technology to do that here.

They won't do it simply because there are too many interests in

Washington, D.C. that don't want the Democrats or the Republicans to get

together. Why don't they go back to the Bracero Program that my father

came many years ago in the '40s when young American men were overseas

fighting the war?

They had a Bracero Program where they would go to Waymos (ph), Mexico,

they would get a permit. They work the season harvesting whatever they're

going to harvest. They'd gladly return to Mexico.

The only reason many of them just stay here is because it's so hard to

go back and forth. Either we - either we need to have cheap labor or we

want to pay $10 for a tomato. It's as basic as that.

OLBERMANN: Wow. You summed it up beautifully.

Comedian and actor and advocate, Paul Rodriguez - great thanks for

your time tonight, Paul.

RODRIGUEZ: Thank you.

OLBERMANN: As promised, now, let's turn to Robert Menendez, the

Democrat of New Jersey, one of the senators who developed the immigration

overhaul framework unveiled tonight by the Democrats.

Senator Menendez, thanks for your time tonight.

MENENDEZ: Good to be with you, Keith.

OLBERMANN: What are the things the framework aims to do?

MENENDEZ: It does several things. Number one, make sure that we have

the appropriate border protection so we don't have unlimited crossings of

people who are undocumented. It makes sure that those people who are in

this country in an undocumented status can have a temporary status upon the

passage of the law and come forth. I'd rather know who is here to pursue

the American dream versus who might be here to do it harm. And I won't

know that if I have millions of people in the darkness.

It also says to those individuals, you're going to have to pay your

taxes. You're going to have to go through a criminal background check.

You're going to have to wait a series of years as we clean up the back log

of those who have been waiting under the present system to be reunified for

families. But then you're going to have an access to permanent resident if

you've been a good resident during this whole period of time, if you've

paid your taxes, learned English and have no criminal background check.

We're going to deal to make sure that in doing that, we don't depress

wages for all other workers because now, you don't have an underground

economy and you don't have exploitation of workers.

So, it has a broad framework. It looks at future flows of what we

need in our economy and also family reunification - a lot of ideas that

Republicans had, particularly on border enforcement. It's an invitation

for them to come and join us in a bipartisan effort to get something that

is both in the national security interest and the national economic

interest of the country.

OLBERMANN: At that news conference today, you invited your Republican

colleagues to join you in fleshing this framework out. Mr. Boehner from

the House said that this is not the time to attempt anything in terms of

broad-based immigration reform. Politically, it's the wrong time, he said,

to do so.

I'm gathering they're not clamoring to join you on this, even though

they view this as an issue of national security?

MENENDEZ: Well, you know, you can't have it both ways. You can't

have Republican governors in Arizona saying the federal government failed

so we're going to act in a way that totally is unconstitutional, from my

view. You can't have members of Congress say that the federal government

has failed, but then say, politically, it's untenable to deal with.

This is truly a national security and a national economic issue. And

so, Congress's failure to act leads to the Arizonas of the country, where

even U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents - you know, Keith, we

have 200 cases of U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents unlawfully

detained in immigration raids in violation of their constitutional rights

as a United States citizen.

That is not acceptable and that's where we continuously see this

situation leading to.

OLBERMANN: Well, there's a lot of things wrong with that law in

Arizona - but is that last point of yours is not the key ingredient? Is

it not theoretically that if you were traveling in Arizona, under that law,

if it gets to be enforced as of August, and you had no documents that

proved you that were in the U.S. Senate, that you might be questioned?

MENENDEZ: Oh, yes. I mean, if I'm standing with a bunch of day

laborers and I look a certain way, and the police come in lawful contact

which means lawful contact, you have two police officers walking down the

street towards a crowd, they're in lawful contact. They're in a patrol car

and stop by a group of people, they're in lawful contact. If we're having

a rally in Arizona and the police are there, they're in lawful contact.

And now, that gives them the opportunity to question anybody under

reasonable suspicion. What is reasonable suspicion? Is it the way I look?

Is it the way I speak? Is it, you know, the nationality that I have?

What makes someone - you know, I don't have - I don't carry my U.S.

citizenship birth certificate where I was born in the United States. I

don't carry my passport with me unless I'm traveling. What proves I'm a

United States citizen?

And so, what we're going to have is what we've already had, where U.S.

citizens and legal permanent residents, already green card holders who

followed the rules, obeyed the laws, and ultimately came through this

country through family reunification have been caught up in these raids and

often detained for months before they're released.

OLBERMANN: Senator Robert Menendez, the Democrat of New Jersey -

again, great thanks for your time tonight.

MENENDEZ: Thank you.

OLBERMANN: Still on the subject of the Senate, the polling set he

would get thumped in the Republican primary by the tea party kid. But it

also said he could easily win as an independent. Guess which Charlie Crist

has just decided to try in Florida?


OLBERMANN: Damn the tea party and full speed ahead. What this man

announced late this afternoon about the Senate in Florida.

Spill, baby, spill - she was mocked for her naive call to drill

everywhere. The slick from the exploded oil rig now threatens Louisiana.

Maybe they should name it after her.

Tea party meets shark. Not only does this man endorse the birthers,

he now admits Obama is driving the birthers nuts. Nice work to you, Mr.


And the videotape of the year: how did this comedian and actor come up

with the perfect impression of Glenn Beck 15 years before Glenn Beck

brought the crazy to your television - our special guest.

You're watching Countdown on MSNBC.


OLBERMANN: As of tonight, Florida Governor Charlie Crist is now

officially running for the Senate as an independent. He will either win,

lose or draw. Draw, that is, just enough votes away from the Republican to

allow a little-known Democrat to win that seat.

But regardless of the outcome - in our fourth story tonight - Crist

is and will be a symbol of a Republican Party that has tried to win despite

part of itself. The "will he or won't he" question answered today by a man

who has been a prominent Republican in Florida, the nation's fourth largest

state, for more than a decade. Governor Crist, the early favorite for that

Senate seat but whose poll numbers steadily dropped against the tea party

contender Marco Rubio.

Governor Crist joined a debate with Rubio less than a month ago ruled

out running as an independent candidate, today announced he will run as a

candidate without affiliation - -in other words, as an independent.


CRIST: Unfortunately, our political system is broken. I haven't

supported an idea because it's a Republican idea or it's a Democratic idea.

I support ideas that I believe are good ideas for the people. Now, I could

have chosen to stay in the primary, but frankly, for me, it's your

decision. It's not one club's decision or another - or even a club within

that club.

It is a decision too important, it is a decision for all the people of

Florida to be able to make. And so, that's why we go straight to November.


OLBERMANN: Former speaker of the Florida House of Representatives,

Mr. Rubio, basically scoffing in response. His statement which reads, in

part, "Governor Crist still doesn't get it. This election's outcome was

never going to hinge on whether he chose to run as a Republican or not."

Rubio may, in fact, be the one who doesn't get it. The Democratic

candidate for the Senate seat, Congressman Kendrick Meek, was quick to

signal his strategy in a three-way race, today saying that Crist was in

line with Rubio on most issues, but it was hard to differentiate them and

that, otherwise, Crist is a flip-flopper.

Governor Crist now faces problems with fundraising. Senator John

Cornyn says he expects GOP donors to ask Crist for their money back and any

Republican currently on Crist's election staff who wants a future in the

Republican Party would probably have to quit. The Republican polling firm

of Public Opinion Strategies announced today that it is resigning from its

contract with Governor Charlie Crist's campaign team.

And at the national level are some Republicans shuddering at this

latest boldest bit of evidence at a party at odds within itself, the

establishment Republican candidate for the Senate race in Kentucky, Trey

Grayson, is trailing the tea party favorite there, Rand Paul. And top tier

Republican recruits like Carly Fiorina in California and Rob Simmons in

Connecticut are trailing their rivals in their own party for their party's

nomination for the U.S. Senate. And those are just a few of the examples.

Let's turn now to the former governor of Vermont, former chairman of

the DNC, consultant to McKenna, Long & Aldrich, as well as Democracy for

America, contributor to CNBC: Governor Howard Dean.

Governor, good evening.

HOWARD DEAN, FORMER DNC CHAIRMAN: Thank you very much, Keith, for

having me on.

OLBERMANN: It's one of those great long introductions that you expect

at a convention.

DEAN: Yes. My Lord, that's going to be longer than the segment if

we're not careful.

OLBERMANN: All right. Florida first. According to the polls, Rubio

would have shellacked Crist in the Republican primary.

DEAN: Right.

OLBERMANN: But that three-way polling is really close and many of

these polls, Crist is ahead. Even if Rubio gets that seat ultimately, did

the tea party wing of the Republicans hurt itself because just of that


DEAN: Well, I don't think the tea party wing cares if it hurts the

Republican Party very much. This is - this is a real split in the

Republican Party and it's actually one that Republicans have to deal with

because they can't appeal to young people under 35. They're not going to -

the people under 35 in this country, 63 percent of them voted for Barack


It's a new generation. And, of course, they get older every year.

They aren't haters. They're not angry people. They want to actually work


Charlie Crist has really symbolized that in his governorship. Now,

I'm, of course, supporting Kendrick Meek, who I think, as of now, has a

great shot at winning this thing. But any of the three of them could win

this thing. And, you know, I think this is a Republican Party that's

really got a problem here.

OLBERMANN: All right. Strategically, how does Mr. Meek inherit

Florida, if not the Earth?

DEAN: Inherit the Earth?


DEAN: He's a hard working guy. He's got a campaign - he's got some

good, smart people who are supporting him, who I've been talking to some.

And he's going to get - you know, that he certainly going to get the

Democratic base and then the rest of it is up for grabs.

You know, I think the conservative base is clearly going to Rubio.

The Democratic base is going to Kendrick. And the rest of it's up for

grabs. And in that one, any of these guys has a shot.

OLBERMANN: Back to Governor Crist and his statement this afternoon.

He seemed to be dancing around this to some degree. He referred to his

candidacy being less about himself and more about the state of the

political system in Florida and in the country. It seemed like he was

saying something meant for the tea party and the divisiveness that exists


Was that what he was saying? And if it was, why was he not more

explicit about that?

DEAN: Well, you know, you never want to insult people who might vote

for you, and some might. But this is a lot of overtones of the vote, the

special election up in District 23 in New York, where the Republican Party,

the right-wing of the Republican Party - the Palin, Romney, whatever right

wing - just didn't think the Republican candidate was good enough for


Now, you know, Crist has got a very solid record as governor. He's

probably got better numbers among Democrats than he does among Republicans.

He was basically turned out by his own party. And this is a pattern that's

been going on for a while as Republicans figure out how they're in the

world they're going to appeal to this under 35 crowd. I think Kendrick

Meek will have no trouble appealing to the under 35 crowd.

And let me remind everybody that Barack Obama won in Florida. It was

his greatest victory and his most difficult victory in 2008.

So, this is going to be really the most interesting race I think in

the entire country, where you have a Republican governor forced out of his

own party because of the far-right who's now running as an independent,

more popular among Democrats than he is among Republicans. I think

anything can happen in this race.

OLBERMANN: Looking at this at a national perspective - are Democrats

advised to assume that this is the way things may play out when there is a

semi-moderate Republican, or is there a danger of relying too much on the

tea party sort of pulling the extreme and leaving the middle there for the

Democrat to beat a very challenged Republican?

DEAN: There is a danger in that. You can't - you have to assume the

tea party is going to energize conservatives to get out and vote. So, if

they're going to energize their own base - in some instances, that energy

is going to split their party, and in other instances, it's going to be

helpful to Republicans.

So, I don't think the Democrats - I think the Democrats need to work

very hard to focus on what's going on. I think - frankly, I think the

last week has been great for Democrats when the Republicans are trying to

block the financial reform bill. They have very little sympathy among the

electorate for that.

So, this has been a solid, solid week for Democrats. And, certainly,

the movement of Charlie Crist out of the Republican Party has I think

helped us and it's going to help Kendrick Meek - we hope Senator Meek.

OLBERMANN: Governor Howard Dean, a man who needs no introduction -

great thanks as always. Good to talk you, sir.

DEAN: Even though I've got a long one. Thanks.


From the same TV station that brought us "keep blanking that chicken,"

something that might be even grosser. And the chickens come home to roost

for the "drill, baby, drill" crowd faster than anyone dreamt possible to

the great dismay of Louisiana.

We'll continue.


OLBERMANN: Drill, baby, drill - the disastrous oil rig explosion as

the slick heads for Louisiana.

First, birthdays: Michelle Pfeiffer, Barbaro, my friend Gary Cohen,

the play-by-play man of the New York Met who turns 52, and one of his color

men, Keith Hernandez, who turns 206.

Tweets of the day now run from the spill to fixed news to the

birthers. The second runner-up from @penndyd2: "If Obama visits Arizona,

can birthers sue local police for not arresting him as suspected illegal

alien?" Now, that sounds like a Beckian conspiracy theory. And, again, so

does the Arizona legislature.

Runner-up from @Wyleknowords: "What's the easiest job in the world?

Fact checker for FOX News."

And our Tweet of the Day from @MenaOH: "Sarah Palin's energy policy,

drill, baby drill - spill, baby, spill - burn, baby, burn, new location,

drill, baby, drill, et cetera."

That would be a lot funnier if it weren't literally true.

Let's play "Oddball."


OLBERMANN: We begin 18 blocks north of here at the studios of "Good

Day New York" - in the very news room in which I began my TV career as an

intern in 1978. At issue, the National Milk Producers Federation's latest

assertion: a product can only be called milk if it comes from a lactating

animal. Anchors Greg Kelly and Rosanna Scotto discussing the dilemma with

medical correspondent Dr. Safnah Parikh (ph), and Ms. Scatto has a

suggestion. Warning, potentially offensive language is used now.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There are things like the soy milk, rice milk.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What else are we going to call it? Soy juice?

You can't do that.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. That's an option too.


OLBERMANN: She said socialism.

In her defense, perhaps Ms. Scatto was trying to follow in the

footsteps of her former co-anchor there.





OLBERMANN: To the Oddball mug shot hall of fame. It's a been a while

since we've checked. Time now for a new inductee, joining such other

living legends as Tom DeLay, Boss Limbaugh and, of course, the I heart

midget porn guy. Perhaps inspired by another hall of famers dastardly

facial hair, tonight we welcome the inverse of Mr. Handlebar Mustache Guy,

this guy, arrested for violating parole and sending out subliminal messages

on the upper lip area. Actually, just for the first thing. The picture is

courtesy of the Smoking Gun Website. And I think it - what does that say?

Oh, no. Move along. Nothing to see here.

As the oil rig disaster in the Gulf literally spreads towards the

cities of the Gulf, how's that whole drilly spilly thing working out for



OLBERMANN: The edge of an oil slick more than 100 miles long is less

than three miles away from land, from the mouth of America's river, from

the Pasalucha (ph) Wildlife Reserve, one of Louisiana's fragile marshland

ecosystems. In our third story tonight, it's already made an impact

farther away in Washington. The president today unleashing the federal

government to respond. And even though Tea Partiers don't seem to mind

this government bailout, Mr. Obama assured taxpayers private industry will

be picking up this tab too.


OBAMA: While BP is ultimately responsible for funding the cost of

response and clean up operations, my administration will continue to use

every single available resource at our disposal, including potentially the

Department of Defense.


OLBERMANN: Triggered by the explosion and sinking of a Gulf rig more

than a week ago, the spill itself from the pipe that once connected the rig

to the well, almost one mile down, is now gushing five times faster, says

the government, than BP first claimed, pouring 210,000 gallons into the

Gulf every day. Putting it on pace to surpass by next week the milestone

1969 spill off Santa Barbara, California.

Putting Mr. Obama on the defensive. The White House hinting it could

reconsider plans to expand offshore drilling. As "Huffington Post"

reports, the administration gave BP some exceptions for this rig, based on

BP estimates of a worst case scenario that was better than this spill. And

that BP executives pushed back against new rules last September, claiming

"the industry's current safety and environmental statistics demonstrate

that the voluntary programs have been and continue to be very successful."

And though BP is now considering cleanup methods never tested this deep,

including under water chemical disbursements and a 100-ton steel dome.

Earlier this month, Sarah Palin told Republicans in New Orleans, no

more study is needed to drill for new oil in the Gulf.


SARAH PALIN, FMR. GOVERNOR OF ALASKA: We can produce it safely and

responsibly. We don't need more studies, we need more action. Because

energy produced in America is security for America. And it is jobs for

American workers, jobs that can't be outsourced. Let's drill, baby drill,

not stall, baby, stall.


OLBERMANN: That woman is an idiot. Let's bring in Joe Romm, senior

fellow at the Center for American Progress, the editor of and the author of "Straight Up." Thanks for your time


JOE ROMM, CLIMATEPROGRESS.ORG: Thanks for having me, Keith.

OLBERMANN: BP originally said it could handle a spill by itself. It

originally said it would just be 1,000 barrels a day. How has that

affected this whole thing, what they said?

ROMM: Yeah, well BP gave us - you know, they said trust us. And

they said - they gave us a low ball estimate for the spill rate, and left

everyone with the impression they could take care of it themselves. I

think, thankfully, the Obama administration didn't trust them. NOAA did

their own calculation and realized that this spill rate was five times what

BP said. It's 200,000 gallons a day.

And so Obama declared all hands on deck. And he sent out the Coast

Guard, EPA and Interior. But I think BP's initial reaction has been - has

made this mess a lot tougher to clean up.

OLBERMANN: The - the cause of the explosion is yet to be determined.

The cause of the safety valve not engaging fully yet to be determined. But

does that mean it's too early to determine whether or not regulation was an

issue here?

ROMM: Well, you know, you had the quote from Palin, everyone said

this is clean, this is safe. The fact of the matter is that BP was not

using the latest technology. Brazil requires this backup cutoff switch

that BP was not using. The fact of the matter is that BP has fought

tougher regulations. They want the voluntary self-regulation, trust me

approach. Obviously, that doesn't work.

But I don't think this should come as a big surprise. For eight

years, this country was led by two oil guys, two fossil fuel guys. They

looked the other way. They didn't regulate tough. So we've had the worst

mine disaster in decades. We had just had another mine disaster. Now,

we've had a big oil disaster. I don't think it's a coincidence.

OLBERMANN: And this whole press to get past regulation, as summarized

by Ms. Palin's really sort of - I can't quite describe what kind of

misunderstanding she has of this situation. But it is so simplistic as to

be maddening. Ninth of April she said in New Orleans, it's perfectly safe

to drill in the gulf. Eleven days later, 11 people are missing and

presumed dead, and now we have this situation at 20 days later. How is

that energy credential naivete thing working out for her?

ROMM: Palin, you know, she said she was an expert on foreign policy

because she could see Russia from her home. If she'd looked in the other

direction, she would have seen Prince William Sound, where the Exxon Valdez

spilled all that oil and caused environmental disaster. This BP spill, if

it keeps up at the current rate, in 50 days, it will be worse than the

Exxon Valdez. And I spoke to a friend of mine who was a 20-year Coast

Guard veteran, and he said these well blowouts can take months to cap, and

that this oil is going to percolate and cause devastation to fish.

I think we all remember the Exxon Valdez pictures of the oil covered

shores, birds and fish. So I think we've - we believe people when they

said you can drill clean and safely in the Gulf. But I think we've now

learned otherwise.

OLBERMANN: Very briefly, is this going to change the Obama

administration's point of view on this subject?

ROMM: I think the Obama administration - you know, this is going to

go on for a while. I think this is going to change the Obama

administration position. The good news is, just this week, they announced

the first offshore wind project off of Cape Cod. They've announced the

biggest fuel economy standards. So they've always had an approach that was

aimed on clean energy. And I think that's - it's the clean safe energy of

the 21st century that never runs out, which is where the future lies.

OLBERMANN: Joe Romm with the Center for American Progress, great

thanks for your time tonight.

When someone asks, where did this Glenn Beck get this crap? The

answer is he got it from this Dave Foley sketch from "The Kids in the Hall"

in 1994. The sketch and Dave Foley ahead.

The Facebook page with a million friends, devoted with praying to God

to take the president. So what if others prayed to God to take them?

And when Rachel joins you at the top of the hour, she'll interview a

member of the group FAIR, which helped write the new Arizona show me your

papers law. Yes, FAIR, that's just a brand name.


OLBERMANN: Worst persons in a moment. First, no, this isn't your

water coming to a boil, it's our nightly checkup on the something for

nothing crowd. It's Tea Time.

Yet more opportunities tonight to track the slow motion jump of the

Tea Parties over the proverbial shark tank. The lead speaker at the

National Convention of the Tea clan, Tom Tancredo with a new theory, Obama

has a valid and American birth certificate, but he's holding it back



TOM TANCREDO, FMR. CONGRESSMAN: They may very well not want to show

it simply because they want to propagate this whole thing going on about

Birthers. They may be doing it for that reason. They want it propagated

because it -

ALAN COLMES, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: It makes your party look nuts.

TANCREDO: That's why - maybe that's why they don't produce the

document. I don't know.


OLBERMANN: Deliberately holding back his birth certificate to make

the Tea Partiers nuts. If true, Mr. President, you're doing a hell of a

job. Keep it up.

Here's one I haven't seen before, but I'm told this is a hoot too.

This is the Tea Party candidate for governor of Alabama on the subject of

English only.



make us give driver's license exams in 12 languages? This is Alabama. We

speak English. If you want to live here, learn it. We're only giving that

test in English if I'm governor. And it makes sense. Does it to you?


OLBERMANN: Well, to be - to be - I'm sorry, every once in a while,

the accent on one of these guys, I just can't penetrate it. Thank goodness

we don't have an official language or anything, they probably wouldn't

allow that guy into Arizona. I caught that one part about Ali Baba. Is

he going to tell us the story of the 40 thieves?


OLBERMANN: The prophet Dave Foley, who un to us in 1994 foretold the

coming of the locust known as the Lonesome Rhodes. His prophesy, and yeah,

how he feels about it, and perhaps even a little bit about the new series

from the "Kids in the Hall." Yeah, verily that's next, but first tonight's

worst persons in the world.

Fittingly, the bronze to the publicity department at Fixed News,

celebrating 100 months as the top rated outfit in the loosely defined

category of cable news. And the loss of 19 percent of its viewers from

last April to this April with a full-page ad in the "Washington Post."

"The most powerful name in news" reads the modest slogan, as ever. Then

there are the stars, Bret Baier, Shepard Smith, Bill-O with a little hair

help, and Sean Hannity, Greta Van Susteren. And Lonesome Rhodes Beck is

where? Don't give me that they don't claim he's news. They don't claim

O'Reilly's news, or Hannity. Murdoch himself said that.

They left Beck out. Now he's going to start crying again.

Our silver medal winner, Yantze Terrell Cochran (ph) of Davenport,

Iowa. Bailed out a friend last week who was at the Scott County Courthouse

for unpaid traffic tickets. Bail was 300 dollars. Mr. Cochran allegedly

gave the clerk six 50s, six counterfeit 50s. Two of them had the same

serial number. Now he's in jail too.

But our winner, the people behind a Facebook page. All we have is

location, Mariesville (ph), Ohio, 43040. It has a million Facebook

friends. It is filled with doctored photos of the president and it is

dedicated to what the lunatic fringe Bible thumpers called imprecatory (ph)

prayer for President Obama to die. A lot has been made about this and how

Facebook should have taken the page down days or weeks ago. I'd like to

suggest a better idea. These people evidently believe imprecatory prayer

works, that you can pray another person to death. History would suggest

otherwise, but if they believe it, what would their lives be like if they

knew everybody else was making imprecatory prayers for God to kill them?

They'd crap their pants. It won't even work. You keep your site and the

rest of us will, you know, keep you in our prayers.

Organizers of the anti-Obama prayer group, bye, nobody will ever miss

you, today's worst persons in the world.


OLBERMANN: Leonardo da Vinci drew plans for a helicopter 450 years

before anybody built one. There is an image of the Egyptian pharaoh Tutmos

III about to swing a bat at a ball. This is from 1475 BC. Now we've

learned that Glenn Beck of 2010 is just a bad version of a sketch performed

by Dave Foley of the "Kids in the Hall" in 1994.

Our number one story, dude, this Beck guy totally ripped you off.

Sketch and Mr. Foley live in a moment. First, it was Beck voted by its

supporters as one of "Time's" most influential people, blurbed by Sarah

Palin. "Who would have thought a history buff with a quirky sense of humor

and a chalkboard could make for such riveting television?"

Only Sarah Palin would think that kaleidoscopic drug flashback

misunderstanding of past events was history. But anyway, the link to this

was Tweeted to me by Haley Adams (ph) the night before last. When I say

it's a kind of proto-Beck, I'm not giving Dave Foley enough credit.

Watch from "Kids in the Hall," season five, episode 12, now available

on DVD, "The Communist Threat."


DAVE FOLEY, "THE KIDS IN THE HALL": Let sleeping gods lie. I say,

no! And you know what sleeping dogs I'm referring to, don't you? No? Let

me refresh your memory, Russians. That's right, Russians, Ruskies,

Communists. Communist.

Oh, now you remember. Well, you also remember how a few years ago all

we ever talked about was how the Russians were going to take over the

world, and how every household would be run by communists and their filthy

communism. Oh, yeah, we feared the Russians back in them days and for good

reason, too.

But now all I ever hears, poor little Russia. They've got no money.

Poor little Russia. They've gone broke. Poor little Russia this, and poor

little Russia that.

Don't you get it? Am I the only one that gets it? It's a trick.

Communism never dies, communism is a cancer, a cancer sleeping, awaiting

the moment to devour our freedom, to devour democracy.

Oh, I know what you're thinking. You're thinking this guy's just some

right wing paranoid reactionary who had a horrible upbringing and whose

father beat him every day with a Bible. Well, maybe that's true, but it

never did me any harm. All I'm saying is, a few years ago people used to

listen to me. I fit in.

Well, listen to me now. The Russians, they're going to try to take

over the world again. Don't you forget that for one second, friend, or

else you'll find yourself lining up for toilet paper in some godless world.

There's one more thing I'd like to say. Killer bees, forgot about

them, didn't you? Well, that's just what they want us to do. That's

right. The Russian communists, the killer bees, they're like this! So

when people say to me let sleeping dogs lie, I say to them, friend,

sleeping dogs, they eventually wake up and chew out the throat of


Don't you think I don't know what you're up to, Russia. Don't think

I'm unaware of the fact that Kevin McDonald, or should I say Ivan Chovski

is one of you!


FOLEY: Crazy like a fanatic fox, I mean. Down red. One man, one

vote. One man, one -


OLBERMANN: That was Dave Foley and a bound and gagged Kevin McDonald

on "the Kids in the Hall" in 1994. Here's Dave Foley now. I believe Mr.

McDonald has been released in the interim. Good evening, Dave. Thanks for

your time.

FOLEY: No, nonsense. Thank you. Oh, my god, what damage 20 years


OLBERMANN: I'm telling you. I'm looking at that too and remembering

what I looked like when I first saw it. So we're even. Don't worry about

that part. Is it possible that Glenn Beck never saw that, because if

somebody were to create like a demo tape for an invention called a Glenn

Beck, that's what it would look like, except you'd have a chalkboard

instead of the map, right?

FOLEY: Well, I like to comfort myself by thinking that Glenn Beck has

never seen it because I would hate to think that he was actually a "Kids in

the Hall" fan. I don't want to contribute to his happiness in any way.

OLBERMANN: Maybe he thought it was an instructional video rather than


FOLEY: Yes, or maybe - he may have seen it and thought it was a

vision, a Biblical revelation. Yeah, I don't - I guess - at the time I

guess, we were probably like thinking more about - Rush Limbaugh was

already around in those days.


FOLEY: So I guess if you take Rush Limbaugh's already insane paranoia

and exaggerate it to a point of absurdity, I guess what you end up with is

Glenn Beck.

OLBERMANN: And you added the word fox there at the end, which really

does elevate this to the level of prophecy. But when this was aired on CBS

in '94, that got laughs. Obviously, the audience laughed, the audience at

home laughed. At the same time, the real Glenn Beck was still drunk and

stoned somewhere. And today, the people who watch Beck think he is this

political oracle. Either you missed your calling - you could have gone

into the political oracle business - or Glenn Beck's followers are unaware

they're worshipping a bad impression of a comedy sketch. Is that basically

the choice?

FOLEY: Also another important point is we have to be really careful

who we let into rehab. Because clearly we could have saved ourselves a lot

of trouble if Glenn Beck was still drunk on the floor.

OLBERMANN: Goodness. Do you remember the creative process behind it?

It is quite a while ago. And if you don't have notes on every sketch -

other than Limbaugh, were you - were you perhaps afraid of a reconstructed

USSR yourself? Or hit by a bee? Or what happened?

FOLEY: No, I think we were just amused by sort of the paranoia of

people about - I mean, because let's face it, Canada is a communist

country. We're very socialist and proudly so. So, yeah, we were - in

those days, we weren't so - we were more afraid of you guys than the

Russians. So -


FOLEY: But I have to give credit, too. I didn't actually write that

piece. It was written by a guy named Norm Hiskoch (ph), who is now one of

the producers on "Parks and Recreation." So it was he who wrote that. I

think it was the same thing, we were sort of tickled by the absurdity of


OLBERMANN: And wonderfully so. I have to ask this, for all the fans.

There was a "Kids in the Hall" miniseries this year in Canada, aired on

Canadian TV. Are we going to get to see it here? Or can we borrow a copy

from you or what?

FOLEY: Well, I downloaded it illegally, myself. But it will be on -

OLBERMANN: There's -

FOLEY: It's going to be on IFC in August. So we'll be running here.

And it's eight half hours. It's not sketch. It's an ongoing story. And I

hope people like it. And lord knows what will happen 20 years from now,

what horrible monsters will rise out from this, rise up from this.

OLBERMANN: I really wonder if you shouldn't just summarize this, sort

of put yourself in the category of Paddy Chaefsky, who predicted all of

television today with "Network." I think that's how quality this vision,

or whatever it was, was. But I did notice that in there, there were a lot

of camera turns, which I do all the time.

So, you know, it really was prophetic. The comedian and actor Dave

Foley, or as he's now known around here, the prophet Dave Foley. Been a

fan for 20 years, so thanks for all that. Thanks for your time tonight.

FOLEY: Thanks. I'm a big fan of yours.

OLBERMANN: You prophesized my changing cameras, so there it is. I

owe it to you. Beck does too, but I'm sure you'll never hear from him, if

you're lucky. Take care, Dave.

FOLEY: No, I hope not. Bye-bye.

OLBERMANN: That's Countdown for this the 2,555th day since the

previous president declared mission accomplished in Iraq. I'm Keith

Olbermann, good night and good luck.