I love Keith Olbermann’s rage at George Bush—it mirrors my own, but...
I admire Michael Moore’s tenacity, but...
I agree with Arianna Huffington on many issues but...
The “buts” are big ones. Olbermann is a news anchor, Moore makes documentary movies, Huffington offers herself as a political analyst.
They all keep stepping over the line between journalism and jawboning. As the William Hurt anchorman in “Broadcast News” put it, “It’s hard not to cross it, they keep moving the little sucker, don’t they?”
But we are close to erasing it. Jon Stewart, as usual, nailed it when he accused Tucker Carlson and Paul Begala on “Crossfire” of being “partisan hacks.”
“You’re doing theater,” he told them, “when you should be doing debate, which would be great.”
If this sounds sanctimonious, sorry. It’s hard to get heard in this noisy world (ask any blogger), but on life-and-death issues, we have to hold the line somewhere.
If Olbermann becomes the not-Bill O’Reilly or Huffington the un-Ann Coulter, they hurt what they’re trying to protect: responsible free speech.
Michael Moore is working on health care in America. Let’s hope he resists the emotional cheap shots. Leni Riefenstahl is not the best role model for picturing a healthy society.