November 6, 2010

Keith Olbermann seems to be some sort of authority on the expression of anger... or at least Joe Biden thinks he is.

Submitting to Deborah Solomon's questions — in bold — he says:
One of the big flaws now is that there is all this noise on the right. When I yell there is a reason for it. There is a political and factual discernment behind it. I am not doing it gratuitously...

I once had a conversation with the man who is now the vice president when he was still in the Senate, who asked me for advice about how to turn anger into righteous inspiration.

Joe Biden took you to lunch to ask you for tips on getting angry?

He said, ‘‘I just come across like I’m angry and out of control, and you seem to focus it and make it look useful and expressive.’’
Controlled, useful-looking anger. Yes, exactly how does one give that appearance and when is it appropriate? And more importantly, how do we on the receiving end of anger defend ourselves against speakers who would love to leap into the primal dimension of our minds and manipulate us by tapping the feelings we felt when we were children, inspired and intimidated by our parents?

Our #1 defense, it seems, is that we've learned to perceive the angry speaker as having taken leave of his senses. Biden sought the secret — which he imagined Olbermann possessed — for getting around that defense. He wanted to know how to seize the power of the patriarch.

67 comments:

kent said...

Stolen from a poster over on the Reason Magazine boards, re: Potential MSNBC Replacements for Olbermann's Show:

"Crossfire... with Alvin Greene and Meghan McCain!"

Synova said...

But did Olbermann ever succeed at it?

I don't think so.

And by "it" I mean using anger on purpose, constructively, to take on the appearance of authority.

Mostly people who liked what they were hearing and wanted to hate on the people he was hating on thought he was great.

Everyone else thought he was a mock-worthy blow-hard.

Maguro said...

Keith Olbermann is good at focusing his anger and making it look useful and expressive?

Compared to Charles Manson, maybe.

I have to think Biden was just buttering him up. He can't possibly believe that.

Then again, it is Biden...

kent said...

Seriously, though: who wouldn't want the spluttering rageaholic who routinely refers to women he doesn't like, on-air, as (f'rinstance) "a mashed-up bag of meat with lipstick on it" their default go-to guy on all issues anger management-related...?

WHATTAGUY -- !!!

Palladian said...

I really love it when elected government officials splutter with rage.

What we really need in America and especially American politics is more emotionalism. Turn those dials up to 11, people. Let it ooze and spurt from every pore. Allow the torrents of uncontrolled emotion to flood the streets and wash away all the bad things there.

NotYourTypicalNewYorker said...

Rage and hate filled lefties used olbermann to legitimize themselves. Look! He's coiffed and wears a suit and he thinks like ME! See! I'm OK!(right?)

Not only that but I hear he spends a lot of time in the bathtub....

PatCA said...

I think Uncle Joe was flattering him, big time.

shoutingthomas said...

The act is not at all what Olbermann says it is. It's a very old act: The fire and brimstone preacher.

The left has become horrifically sanctimonious. They have become what they hated in the right back in the 60s.

Every issue for the left is a moral issue on the level of the Vietnam War and the Civil Rights movement. So, their opponents are always wicked devils consumed with sin.

And, it's their job to save us from eternal damnation.

Olbermann is just the secular version of the fire and brimstone preacher.

Just nowhere near as attractive or moving.

Sixty Grit said...

Even Jimmy Carter would not be frightened by an angry Joe Biden.

DaveW said...

Yeah, that's what we all need. Advice from Keith Olbermann on how to express our anger.

Lincolntf said...

Dumb and Dumber III: The Liberaling

traditionalguy said...

Where better to get advice on anger restraint than from a person who is angry all of the time. They must have learned some tricks along the way. The Utah football fans are in need of some right now. Their #5 team lost at home to the #3 team 47 to 7. Good work Horned Frogs.

The Crack Emcee said...

Controlled, useful-looking anger. Yes, exactly how does one give that appearance ,...?

You add the word "Sir" to your bullshit.

As far as that "defense" of calling any angry person (but yourself) unhinged, it's a bunch of crap as well.

Lem said...

OT..

CSPAN is airing Supremes oral arguments.. Kagan is active.

The Crack Emcee said...

Kent,

"Crossfire... with Alvin Greene and Meghan McCain!"

Wow - talk about "must-see TV"! I would be so there. As a matter of fact, if the network programmers knew what they were doing, all the most outrageous losers this political season would be sharing a chat show.

1jpb said...

Why did Biden look for help from Olbermann?

Was Paladino busy?

The Crack Emcee said...

Palladian,

Turn those dials up to 11, people.

What is it about 11, anyway?

traditionalguy said...

The neat thing about social reaction to expressions of anger is that it is the truest and most natural of emotion that enables the motivated person to do great deeds...if you are a man. However, if you are a woman it is a disqualification. ( with a special dispensation for red headed Irish women, provided that it is not abused). And I doubt that will ever change.

PETER V. BELLA said...

Biden, the dumbest white man in the world sought advice from a maniacal blithering idiot? Priceless.

PETER V. BELLA said...

Correction, Biden, a mashed up bag of meat with hair plugs and the dumbest white man in the world...

edutcher said...

Whatever it was, it didn't work. Halo Joe only looks like a jerk. Of course, he sounds that way, too.

And then there's the expert, Ubermoronn. He certainly changed a lot of minds with, "Shut. the. Hell. Up".

shoutingthomas said...

The act is not at all what Olbermann says it is. It's a very old act: The fire and brimstone preacher.

The left has become horrifically sanctimonious. They have become what they hated in the right back in the 60s.


It wasn't what they hated in the 60s. It was what they were in the 60s. And ever since.

traditionalguy said...

The neat thing about social reaction to expressions of anger is that it is the truest and most natural of emotion that enables the motivated person to do great deeds...if you are a man...

It can also get you shot.

Cedarford said...

Olbermann just reads what his staff has written for him to say off a teleprompter. He is good, as a sportscaster with the same training as Sarah Palin, to fit his emotions to the red meat in text his writers have prepped and rehearsed delivery with him..

Meanwhile in India - dismay in the Hindustan Times on discovering Obama is not a natural orator, but another Palin or Olbermann:

Obama will make history for more than one reason during the Nov 6-9 visit. This will be the first time a teleprompter will be used in the nearly 100-feet high dome-shaped hall that has portraits of eminent national leaders adorning its walls.

Indian politicians are known for making impromptu long speeches and perhaps that is why some parliament officials, who did not wish to be named, sounded rather surprised with the idea of a teleprompter for Obama.

"We thought Obama is a trained orator and skilled in the art of mass address with his continuous eye contact," an official, who did not wish to be identified because of security restrictions, said.

Obama is known to captivate audiences with his one-liners that sound like extempore and his deep gaze. But few in India know that the US president always carries the teleprompter with him wherever he speaks.

Teleprompters, also called autocue or telescript, are mostly used by TV anchors to read out texts scrolling on a screen and attached to a camera in front of them.

rhhardin said...

He wanted to know how to seize the power of the patriarch.

Trapdoor feminism.

Irene said...

I can see why Biden sought Olbermann's advice. Biden is a product of the more "gentlemanly" era of politics, when politicians on both sides debated one another in the chamber, but then retired for martinis over a friendly lunch. The sparring was calculated; people sought control of the corners. I think of the game of Go.

Olbermann's rehearsed conviction and snarky indignation appeal to the "if you're not outraged, you're not engaged" set. These are the liberals for whom politics is a secular religion. If you don't buy the hard left position, then you are a scary, extremist heretic. There's no playing with the center, and there's no compromise with the dogma. There are no corners. Everything moves in a wave, in one direction.

Biden probably wanted to learn that "[c]ontrolled, useful-looking anger" so that he light his own fire with the true believers.

tim maguire said...

Joe Biden asked Keith Olbermann for advice on how to express anger? I don't know Joe Biden personally, but I find that very hard to believe. More likely Olbermann is lying to make himself feel better about losing his job.

Trooper York said...

You should never be worried about people who scream and shout and act so angry all of the time. Nine times out of ten they are yuppie pussies. Which is just about the perfect description of Olberman.

You should worry about the quiet guy over in the corner. He is the one who will pull out the Tech-9 and wipe out everybody at the post office.

You alway's hear the same thing about those kind of guys. "He was a guiet guy...never had a bad word to say...kept to himself...the last person I ever thought would kill 25 people at the Budwieser factory."

You don't have to worry about the anger of a yuppie pussy like little Keith.

rhhardin said...

Obermann isn't up to fire and brimstone standards. He's just dumb.

The fire and brimstone preacher has the advantage of allegory, which is to say that what he says is in some sense actually true.

Obermann just gets it wrong and it falls flat. He's angry for nothing.

Jim said...

Biden is a product of the more "gentlemanly" era of politics, when politicians on both sides debated one another in the chamber, but then retired for martinis over a friendly lunch.

You're talking about the same guy who was proud of his role in creating the verb, "Borking."

Biden has NEVER been a gentleman when push came to shove. The difference is that push NEVER comes to shove any more for him. He's been put out to pasture by the Democratic Party in the Vice Presidency where he rarely gets any face time with Obama.

I have no love lost for Joe Biden. He was not a nice person 30 years ago when it actually mattered, and he remains proud of his disgraceful behavior. That alone should disqualify him from polite company.

That he actually comes off better than Obama isn't exactly a ringing endorsement of Obama now is it?

LL said...

Did Joe Biden mistake Olbermann for Neil Kinnock?

Bob_R said...

Olby missed a basic piece of advice - when you make $4M per year and half of your 300 viewers are conservatives looking to put your screwups on YouTube, don't commit any technical violations of company policy.

Hypocrite, phony, cow-college challenged brains posing as an intellectual - but very tall, deep voice, great chin, marvelous hair. MSM prototype.

Lem said...

OT..

File under you cant make this stuff up.

The name of a case is Schwarzenegger v. Entertainment Merchants Association.

Irene said...

Jim, few of us liked Biden years ago, but many would acknowledge that the political game then was very different.

Biden may have been a bull in a china shop then, but he probably knew his way around the store.

The game changed, and Olbermann et al are the mouthpieces of the new game.

That he actually comes off better than Obama isn't exactly a ringing endorsement of Obama now is it?

True, that (game changed).

JAL said...

Palladian --

Your porch light isn't on tonight, but you appear to be home (and on guard?)

Good.

1jpb said...

Lem,

Here is a recording.

Here related chit chat.

David said...

Bull.

Olbermann is making this up, which REALLY PISSES ME OFF!

Lem said...

I see Keith's rants as good for conservatism.

The lack of substance in his arguments leads me to believe we are in the right path.. he's good as a gauge.

The angrier he gets the better.

traditionalguy said...

edutcher...As for getting shot, one picks ones opportunities for anger expression: 1)never act angry to a police officer who has guns and friends, and 2) make a quick calculation whether you ever want anything from that person again, which only leaves a few people to show anger at, and 3) also realize that even your friends who witness this will later distance themselves from you out of fear of you. After making those calculations, then, go ahead and let the SOB have it. In other words, use your anger as a tool and never let it use you.

libhom said...

You have to admit that Olbermann is pretty reasonable and centrist.

DADvocate said...

OK. Biden's a bigger idiot than I thought. Every reasonable person who saw Olberman thought Olberman had taken leave of his senses years ago. And, it appears nearly every poster here knows that.

jr565 said...

Kent wrote:
Seriously, though: who wouldn't want the spluttering rageaholic who routinely refers to women he doesn't like, on-air, as (f'rinstance) "a mashed-up bag of meat with lipstick on it" their default go-to guy on all issues anger management-related...?

WHATTAGUY -- !!!

Well Olby did use the word "sir" a lot when referring to his enemies, i mean opponents. So that's got to count for something.

/sarc

Luther said...

Frankly, they're both ignorant. Why the hell they attract anyone's attention is beyond me.

Kansas City said...

Biden is a fool, and maybe he is some fashion talked with Biden about his "controlled anger," but does anyone really believe Olby's account of the conversation?

William said...

Personally, I like O'Reilly. He always has good looking women on his show and has mildly flirtatious interactions with them.. They are all better informed than Olbermann and much more fun to look at. That woman on with Spitzer is ok looking, but any flirtatious banter betweeen them would cause many to seek shelter in a Carmelite nunnery......Sometimes I watch Olbermann during commercials on the other shows. Like most of his viewers. I keep hoping his throbbing veins will explode or, at the very least, that he will have a stroke. But it's all a tease and will probably never happen. If it were to happen, I would suspect a special effects stunt to boost ratings. But I like the firing. Perhaps they could reinstate him and fire him on a weekly basis. It would be so cool to see Mike Tyson or Rosie O'Donnell or some other surprise celebrity come in and throw him off the air in mid tirade.....It is interesting to note that our Vice President not only considers Olbermann informative but worthy of emulation. There is a kind of relief in knowing that your worst fears are all true.

Freeman Hunt said...

Olbermann's way of expressing anger has always called to mind the look of a medium level officer in a totalitarian state. Comfortable condemning people for no real reason or that even having a reason is secondary.

Alex said...

Ya'll hating on my home boy Keith...

Oligonicella said...

And more importantly, how do we on the receiving end of anger defend ourselves against speakers who would love to leap into the primal dimension of our minds and manipulate us by tapping the feelings we felt when we were children, inspired and intimidated by our parents?

Laugh at them. It hurts them deeply.

Peter said...

Keef got away with his lame act only because we have lost the concept of "fighting words". In my grandfather's day he would have had to back his garbage mouth up with his fists. In my great grandfather's day he would have been horsewhipped in the street. In my great great grandfather's day it would have been gunplay.

We call this progress.

Methadras said...

Olbie is the epotime of a human douche bag. Literally, he is shit sack filled with piss and vinegar.

Mick said...

Liberals are in the second of 5 stages, or they are trying to harness the "anger" aspect of the Tea Party. Funny how these Usurper supporting idiots want to copy those they publically view as "insane" and "racist". First "coffee party" then the Rally, now they are trying to match the Teaparty "anger". Read so much anger in Liberal punditry today. I laugh in their face! But I know these persistant statists won't just go away either. Delusional people are like that.

Paco Wové said...

"We thought Obama is a trained orator and skilled in the art of mass address with his continuous eye contact,"

Oh my. That was good for a morning chuckle.

kent said...

Update on the KwazyKeefie imbroglio:

Keefums Update: "Just Who Do You Think I Am?!?" "Fired."

Always good to start the day off with a big, sunny smile, I always say. Here's something to smile about. ;)

Fen said...

We thought Obama is a trained orator and skilled in the art of mass address with his continuous eye contact with his teleprompter

/fixed

FloridaSteve said...

If this is true... seriously? then Biden is a bigger buffoon than I ever imagined... which is LOT. And Obama is even less competent at judging character.. which is also a LOT. Is it 2012 yet..

Fen said...

libhom said You have to admit that Olbermann is pretty reasonable and centrist.

It says alot that libs choose to have The Outrageous Assertion in their bag of rhetortical tricks.

Also, I wish MediaMatters would run a troll bootcamp. There wasn't much meat on the last batch that stumbled through here.

TmjUtah said...

Who said it? Or something close?

"Once you've faked sincerity, you've got it all covered."

Bad enough we're in the thrall of idiots. Idiots who can't act is a whole 'nother level of suckitude.

kent said...

Who said it? [...] "Once you've faked sincerity, you've got it all covered."

I think it was Groucho Marx... but: I don't know that I'd actually be willing to bet money on that being the right answer.

Ofc. Krupke said...

What they don't seem to understand is that in order to have the power of the patriarch, you have to BE the patriarch.

My father's anger doesn't affect me because he studied at the Olbermann School of Angernomics, it affects me because he's my father and I respect him.

What idiots these people are.

lemondog said...

He wanted to know how to seize the power of the patriarch.

Ehhhhh.....He ain't gotta a chance

Koblog said...

We apologise for the fault in Countdown. Those responsible have been sacked.

Mynd you, Keithbites Kan be pretty nasti...

We apologise again for the fault in Countdown. Those responsible for sacking the people who have just been sacked have been sacked.

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Thor's Dad said...

Just came across this quote today from the theologian/author Frederick Buechner - his Wishful Thinking - very fitting:

Of the Seven Deadly Sins, anger is possibly the most fun. To lick your wounds, to smack your lips over grievances long past, to roll over your tongue the prospect of bitter confrontations still to come, to savor to the last toothsome morsel both the pain you are given and the pain you are giving back--in many ways it is a feast fit for a king. The chief drawback is that what you are wolfing down is yourself. The skeleton at the feast is you.

Claude Hopper said...

"Even Jimmy Carter would not be frightened by an angry Joe Biden", but a charging rabbit made Jimmy wet his pants.

LifeoftheMind said...

Olbermann missed his calling as a Gauleiter. Joe Biden is a character that belongs in literature.

LifeoftheMind said...

Remember the Agnew Rule.

The primary criteria for selecting a Vice President is to make people reluctant to Impeach the President.

kent said...

Joe Biden is a character that belongs in literature.

Something of a Seussian nature, preferably.

Robin said...

Did Joe Biden mistake Olbermann for Neil Kinnock?

Thread winner.

John Fast said...

So you want to learn how to seize the power of the patriarch? To be assertive without being aggressive? To be bold without being rash? To be adult rather than parental? Righteous without being self-righteous?

Fine, that's a noble aim. Let's all work on strengthening our third chakras.

Start by reading -- and practicing the techniques in -- books like Responsible Assertive Behavior; Games People Play; King, Warrior, Magician, Lover: Accessing the Archetypes of the Male Psyche; Seven Habits of Highly Effective People; and the audiotape Self-Discipline and Emotional Control: Remaining Calm and Productive Under Pressure.

Carpe *this*, buddy!

Junkyard Ballerina said...

Olberman is bad in bed. *That* is the source of his anger. He doesn't even do anger well.