“Sequester cuts will make US more vulnerable to terrorist attack” (ahem)
Will we finally call their bluff on these threats?
Allowing the $85 billion sequester to go forward will make the United States more vulnerable to a terrorist attack, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano warned Monday.
Napolitano added that the blunt nature of the $85 billion in automatic spending cuts set for March 1 “makes it awfully, awfully tough” to mitigate threats faced by the nation.
“I don’t think we can maintain the same level of security at all places around the country with sequester compared to without sequester,” said Napolitano, whose agency includes the Transportation Security Administration.
The cuts will also hit the Pentagon, the Department of Justice and other national security spending, and the administration has warned the spending reductions will hurt the military’s readiness.
“I think if you look at the combination of the effect on [the Department of Homeland Security], the Department of Justice and the Department of Defense, we are having real impacts on the robustness of our defensive posture,” Napolitano told reporters at the White House on Monday.
Napolitano’s attendance at the White House briefing was the latest part of a White House effort to pressure Congress into passing a deal that would prevent the sequester.
Earlier on Monday, President Obama urged the nation’s governors, gathered in Washington for their annual meeting, to lobby their congressional delegations to reach a compromise deal.
In her remarks, Napolitano said the cuts would reduce Coast Guard patrols by 25 percent, reduce the number of beds for immigration detentions and increase wait times at ports.
“When you slow down the inspection of containers by up to five days … that translates into lots and lots of jobs, good paying jobs, and those are going to be impacted,” Napolitano said.
Republicans have said the White House is attempting to frighten the American people over the sequester with scare tactics.
“My advice to the [president is] stop the campaigning, stop sending out your cabinet secretaries to scare the American people,” Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal said Sunday on “Meet the Press.”
Jindal said Obama should “roll up your sleeves and do the hard work of governing.”
Asked about Jindal’s comments, Napolitano denied the administration was employing scare tactics.
“I’m not here to scare people; I’m here to inform and let people begin to plan,” Napolitano said.
White House press secretary Jay Carney would not say if Obama will meet with Congressional leaders to discuss the sequester this week.
But he vowed to “continue to engage with the Congress this week.”
The White House is demanding that a sequester replacement bill include some tax increases, something Republicans have refused. Carney indicated that he doesn’t expect Republicans to move much in their position.
“The simple fact is what Republican leaders are saying in public reflects the positions that they have,” he said.
The impasse and divide over taxes suggests the cuts will begin on March 1, with both sides hoping public pressure will build on the other to budge from their position.
More from The Hill:
• Napolitano warns of long TSA lines from sequester
• GOP rips Obama as ‘road show president’
• Rival sequester bills teed up in Senate
• Blame and fear as sequester looms
• Web anonymity battle starts anew
• McCain, Graham to meet with Obama on immigration
• Dems schedule votes on assault weapons ban
• Unprecedented role for celebrity first lady
I had a dream the other night. I stood on the shore looking across a calm ocean. From the east I heard a strange noise. It sounded like the distant roar of a mighty beast. It was quiet on the wings of the wind, but as it passed the ocean suddenly started to roil. Before too long the still waters were undulating wildly and the silence of lapping ripples had become a cacophony of crashing waves. I wondered at what could have fomented such a drastic change. I awoke before I could find out.
What is this beast that can cause so much noise and yet no one seems to hear it? What creature could roam this world with such ferocity and yet no one seems to see it? What animal is announcing its presence to the world in such a powerful way and yet no one dares to report it? Why this entity is the little country of Iceland, and it’s showing the rest of the civilized western world what it truly means to be economically free. It’s showing us all that we don’t need to be under the thumbs of central banksters, and we don’t need to bail them out. They’re showing us that we needn’t worry about the too big to fail should they fail, we only need to worry about them if we keep allowing them to control our economic blood flow.
Back in March of 2010 I published an article entitled “Iceland, the Mouse that Roared.” In it I explain what the people of Iceland were doing to keep control over their infrastructure and to maintain their sovereignty. I applauded the Icelanders at the time for challenging the status quo and refusing to give into the bankers. I stated that I wished the people of the United States would be so brave. Nearly three years later my wish has not come true. Neither the people of the United States nor their corrupt politicians have stood up to the international bankers. Neither have the people of the United States stood up to their corrupt politicians who enable these banksters. The people of Iceland, however, have continued their stance against the establishment.
The United States of America, along with most of the rest of the technologically advanced western countries, continues to remain in the economic doldrums, despite what the mainstream media would have you believe. It’s tough to be unemployed or under employed and have faith in what the mainstream news is telling us lately. What happened to all the well paying high tech jobs we were supposed to be enjoying? What happened to all the well paying high tech manufacturing jobs? What happened to all the even mediocre private sector jobs? What happened to all the jobs we could get to make enough to support our families and create a halfway decent lifestyle? I’ll tell you what happened. The moneyed elite decided they could no longer stand to share the wealth with an industrious, prosperous middle class and so they designed a way where they could end up with all the real wealth. Such is the power of a fiat, debt based, fractional reserve currency system.
What has Iceland done since its fiscal collapse in 2008? How has its economy fared since it decided not to bailout the bankers, but to jail them? Well, according to this clip from “The Young Turks” the economy of Iceland is doing better than most. The difference is Icelanders stood up to the banking elite. The difference is they stood up to their corrupt politicians. They indicted their prime minister, something I’m pretty sure would be akin to us indicting the president, or maybe the speaker of the house. They arrested the chief executives of their three biggest banks. They sentenced one to solitary confinement. They did not listen to the experts and the politicians, they listened to their hearts and did what they felt was right. They did not let the criminals go unpunished to continue their lives of privilege.
Sure, the Icelandic economy went down the first year after their actions. Something like that is to be expected. But just look at what their economy is doing now. It almost regained all its losses in two years and now it’s poised to be one of the strongest economies in the world. If the American people had said “no” to the bailouts in 2008, imagine where we could be today. We, too, would have had a down 2009, but likely our 2010 and 2011 would have made up for it. We could be enjoying a robust economy right now if our politicians had only had the courage to stand up to the bullying banking elite, or we had had the courage to stand up to the political class in Washington, DC.
Iceland’s economic story is one that should be being reported far and wide. Financial news networks ought to be wondering at the resilience of the Icelandic people. We won’t hear anything about it in the mainstream media, however, because the same elite class that own the politicians also own the major media sources. They don’t want you to hear about Iceland. They don’t want you to know that you can be free of the international bankers’ influence. They want you to believe their propaganda. They want you to believe that without them the economy would collapse. They are afraid of what might happen to them should you believe otherwise.
We can still follow Iceland’s example. We can still do as the Icelanders did. Sure, we might have a down 2013 if we did, but the ensuing years would quickly make up for it. There are some who say it’s too late, some who would make the claim that we’re in too deep, but I say it’s never too late to do what’s right. Even if the economy were to suffer, we should not allow criminals to continue to get away with their criminal activities, especially when these criminals are the ultra wealthy elite living in ivory towers they consider impregnable.
We have heard a mouse that roared. It is still roaring, if only we listen. We can be the eagle that screeched louder than the blaring angels’ trumpets. We can soar into the sky on wings of silver and gold. It will take some testicular fortitude, but it can happen. What worries me is that it is more likely we’re going to simply be the chicken that quietly clucks. What worries me is that this could be the last egg laid before the farmer comes to take us to the chopping block, chuckling all the way. We could be something great, a free society prosperous beyond all imagination, if only we follow the mouse’s example, but it looks more and more like we’re being set up to be someone’s supper every passing day.
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Below is a list of all my works available at smashwords.com. Please help me by purchasing one or more of my ebooks and writing favorable reviews if you like them so that others might also enjoy them.
Ron Paul’s Wisdom, A Layman’s Perspective. A Collection of Opinion Editorials. By Szandor Blestman
Galaxium. A screenplay By Matthew Ballotti
The Colors of Elberia; book 1 of The Black Blade Trilogy. By Matthew Ballotti
The Legacy of the Tareks; book 2 of The Black Blade Trilogy. By Matthew Ballotti
The Power of the Tech; book 3 of The Black Blade Trilogy. By Matthew Ballotti
The Edge of Sanity. By Matthew Ballotti
The Ouijiers By Matthew Ballotti
What could be more innocuous than the pizza delivery guy? What could be more welcoming than the man or woman showing up at your door bringing sustenance from one of your favorite restaurants you just called? You didn’t even have to go out into the cold night on your own and freeze your little toes off to get your favorite food. They brought it to you. All for a small convenience fee and whatever voluntary tip you might like to give the person who provided this little service. Ah, but don’t be fooled. These people who provide this service are very dangerous. They must be stopped. You see, these types of people are a perfect example of how a free market system works. If you begin to learn from their example, why you just might learn too much about how the elite who would like to rule the world work, and we just can’t have that now, can we? Besides, you little common folk don’t need such convenient services. Such services should be exclusive to the wealthy elite. Read more
We, as a species, like to label things. We seem to like to be able to slap a label on something so that when we talk about things we have an idea about what’s being talked about. This works well for physical things like plants, animals or minerals, but it can be a bit lacking when talking about not so physical things like political philosophies. People like to label someone like me, someone who doesn’t fit into any of their prefabricated political party holes, so to speak, as a libertarian, an minarchist, a constitutionalist, or some other label. I like to think of myself as an individualist as opposed to a collectivist. I also like to think of myself as an abolitionist, though the vast majority of Americans would believe that such a label is unnecessary as slavery was ended by Abraham Lincoln back in 1865 at the end of the War of Northern Aggression. I would say that no one is as enslaved as the person who believes he is free when he is not. Slavery has just become more subtle and the masters have changed. Read more
In early 2011, it was announced that Dodd – after retiring from 30 years in the Senate – would take up a leading role at the Motion Pictures Association of America (MPAA) for a $1.5 million annual salary. Immediately, the retired Senator would lead the charge to pass the notorious Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), with his incestuous business-government ties visibly rippling through the US House and Senate as well as through the corporate-dominated media.
Despite the obvious conflict of interests and dangerous precedent set by corporations commandeering elected representatives to leverage their influence and bend the law of the people to the will of big corporations, Dodd has been allowed to continue on with the charade. It was recently reported in Wired’s article, “Hollywood’s Total Piracy Awareness Program Set for January Launch,” that:
Beginning in a few weeks, the nation’s major internet service providers will roll out an initiative — backed by Obama and pushed by Hollywood and the record labels – to disrupt and possibly terminate internet access for online copyright scofflaws without the involvement of cops or courts. But that doesn’t mean Hollywood is done filing lawsuits or lobbying Congress.
“It doesn’t mean you give up on litigation,” said Chris Dodd, head of the Motion Picture Association of America, speaking at an industry gathering here Thursday. “It doesn’t mean you give up on legislation.”
As stated in “Decentralizing Telecom,” to constantly fight the interests of mega-corporations, while thus far successful, is not a sustainable strategy. Reacting to the provocations of special interests as they relentlessly attempt to expand their already unwarranted influence and monopolies, must be replaced with a strategy aimed at the very source of their strength.
File sharing is not wrong, and it most certainly is not theft. One would not consider sharing a purchased book with a friend, “theft.” Technology has simply made it possible to share that book with millions of “friends.” File sharing operations making money off of other people’s work might constitute a target for industry and government alike, but file sharing online is also done for absolutely free, through peer-to-peer software.
The answer to sagging business models effected by file sharing is not litigation and legislation, but rather to innovate – something big-industry certainly has the resources to do.
Open-source, crowd-sourced, innovative software, media, and hardware businesses already exist, and are already turning profits while creating local jobs. More importantly, they are opening up markets to consumers who can now become producers, essentially creating “wealth redistribution through entrepreneurship” rather than government subsidies.
These emerging business models prove that jobs, profit, and commerce are not impossible within the new, emerging paradigm people like Dodd work tirelessly against. It does prove, however, that the days the special interests Dodd represents can horde for themselves control over human creativity and the wealth it generates, are coming to an end.
The Battle Plan: By no means should people already engaged in anti-monopoly campaigning give up. People campaigning against SOPA, PIPA, ACTA, and many other forms of legislation represent the minefields upon a battlefield, slowing the advance of the enemy, and denying it access long enough for a counteroffensive to be mounted – but that counteroffensive must eventually be planned and executed.
Dodd’s MPAA “Copyright Alert System,” described by Wired as an “ISP search-and-disrupt operation,” will use the Internet and telecom monopolies to target file sharing. Previously reported on “mesh networks” would easily complicate the enforcement of such a measure. Also, as one keen Wired reader noted in the comment sections:
Too bad the MPAA/RIA know that more sharing happens from portable hard drives than through torrents. So this is a lot like closing the barn door as the horse is leaving…
He would elaborate in a second comment that:
Those file come from the same place as torrents, one person buys it, rips it and shares it. The funny thing is there are less options to get one file (maybe one person you know has it vs. hundreds of torrents) but when you borrow a hard drive you can get more files in a couple of hours than in a year of torrenting.
And indeed, for those looking to get around the corporate-fascist collaboration between government, big-film & record studios, big-software, and big-telecom, a portable hard drive network could easily be organized, expanded and used to sting back even worse than online file sharing already has.
However, such networks, be they mesh or hard drive sharing, are still only countermeasures. To go on the offensive against the special interests behind this campaign, particularly because they still possess almost unlimited finances and political backing, is to avoid taking them head-on and instead attack their supply lines.
We need not travel far to reach these supply lines – for we the consumers of their products and services constitute the sole source of their wealth, with which they buy their influence across governments and the media. Cutting ourselves off, thus cutting their supply lines and leaving them to starve, is as simple as boycotting and replacing them.
We can begin (and in many cases already are) boycotting and replacing them with superior, and more importantly, open alternatives. All things being equal, people would rather watch a free movie than pay for one on Netflix. One rather listen to a free MP3 than pay for one on iTunes.
By crowd-sourcing, crowd-funding, and producing free entertainment online leveraging improved, and increasingly cheaper hardware and software, such alternatives are already emerging. Campaigners against the likes of Dodd, the MPAA, and their SOPA, PIPA, and ACTA travesties, may also consider going a step beyond merely naming those corporations involved, and promote a full-spectrum, permanent boycott (and here), while promoting open-source, innovative alternatives.
Websites featuring open-entertainment could be organized by genre, or contain a variety to choose from. These could be open-versions of iTunes, Netflix, and Amazon, that run on ads, feature donation and referral buttons for artists, and more importantly, remain free and open for all. Live events could be organized and revenue raised for artists and organizers that way.
Design houses and studios using open-source software for commissioned work could augment their income by arranging training workshops and consulting services for other companies to switch over from expensive propriety solutions to open-source. The more people involved in open collaboration, the greater the benefit for all those involved.
Artists have and will always ply their trade for passion. Many are rediscovering the process of working for commissions rather than for royalties, and are using the open-sharing of their work as an advertisement for their commissioned services, live performances, and physical merchandise related to their intellectual efforts.
The arguments of copyrighted industry revolving around the promotion of innovation, art, and entertainment, as well as the creation of jobs, are already falling apart in an emerging, open-paradigm. People like Christopher Dodd whose blatantly compromised agenda makes a mockery of representative governance, embodies an industry and a paradigm that does not deserve perpetuation. Through boycotting and replacing it, by us all becoming open-producers and collaborates instead of consumers bellied up to the corporate troughs, let us ensure a deep enough hole is dug for them, so that when they finally are rolled into it, they never emerge again.
Are you afraid? Are you shaking in your shoes? If so, why? What are you afraid of? If not, why not? According to many sources, you’re supposed to be. The economy is collapsing. Currencies are failing. War is on the horizon. It’s all part of a grand scheme devised by an all powerful elite ruling cabal. There’s something I’ve noticed about fear. Fear can freeze people. It can keep people from moving forward. It can stop people from doing something they should do. It can even make some of them act in immoral ways and then they will make excuses for their actions or inactions later. Fear is a very powerful force. Read more
A month after the Secret Service was rocked by allegations that agents brought prostitutes to a Colombia hotel where they were preparing for a visit by President Obama, the Drug Enforcement Administration today announced that at least three of its agents are also under investigation for allegedly hiring prostitutes in Cartagena.
Two of the agents allegedly had encounters with masseuses in the apartment of one of the agents, according to Sen. Susan Collins, the ranking member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.
“It’s disturbing that we may be uncovering a troubling culture that spans more than one law enforcement agency,” the Maine Republican said this evening. “In addition to the Secret Service scandal, we now learn that at least two DEA agents apparently entertained female foreign national masseuses in the Cartagena apartment of one of the agents. The evidence uncovered thus far indicates that this likely was not just a one-time incident.”
The revelations that Secret Service personnel had been drinking heavily and cavorting with prostitutes ahead of Obama’s trip to Colombia last month overshadowed the president’s trip to the Summit of the Americas. Twelve members of the military were also investgated for allegedly hiring prostitutes.
Eight of the 12 Secret Service employees implicated in the scandal lost their jobs, another is in the process of losing his security clearances, and three agents were cleared of serious misconduct but still could be disciplined. The military has completed its investigation but no disciplinary action has been carried out.
“The Drug Enforcement Administration was provided information from the Secret Service unrelated to the Cartagena hotel Secret Service incident, which DEA immediately followed up on, making DEA employees available to be interviewed by the Department of Justice’s Office of Inspector General,” a DEA spokesperson said in a statement.
“DEA takes allegations of misconduct very seriously and will take appropriate personnel action, if warranted, upon the conclusion of the OIG investigation.” the statement said.
A spokesman for the OIG said the DEA is cooperating in the investigation, which is being coordinated with the Secret Service, Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General, and the State Department’s Diplomatic Security Service.
The DEA has agents posted in Colombia to work on counter-narcotic and drug interdiction missions with Colombian authorities. According to officials the agents were among those assigned in Colombia, they were not specifically working on the President’s trip.
The revelations about the DEA agents comes ahead of a hearing scheduled on Wednesday with Secret Service Director Mark Sullivan testifying before the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee.
Al Jazeera has supplied Syrian rebels with satellite communication tools to ensure telephone and Internet connection, claims Ali Hashim, a former correspondent of the Qatar-funded channel. The equipment was smuggled from Lebanon, he told RT. The channel paid $50,000 for smuggling phones and other tools across the Syrian border to ensure they would get an inside picture, claims Ali Hashim.
A month ago, Hashim and two other correspondents working for Al Jazeera in Lebanon, stepped down from their jobs over a dispute over how the Arab Spring should be covered. Reporting popular unrest in Bahrain and Syria revealed the acutest differences between the men and their employer.
“The channel was taking a certain stance. It was meddling with each and every detail of reports on the Syrian revolution. At the same time it was almost covering up what was going on in Bahrain,” recalls Hashim.
The journalist says Qatar authorities actually decided the channel’s agenda and created their own version of the Syrian crisis.
“We went to the border between Lebanon and Syria. There it became obvious that militants entered Syria from Lebanon to clash with the Syrian regular army, which was 3 kilometers away from the border,” Hashim told RT.
“We took photos of those people, but the channel declined them. I was asked to forget about the militants and to return to Beirut,” he says.
In an earlier interview with the Lebanese newspaper As-Safir, Hashim called Al Jazeera’s policy “informational suicide.”
The Syrian government has repeatedly slammed the unbalanced coverage of the uprising by some Arab news channels. But Hashim remarks that both sides of this conflict are playing dirty: while some media are siding with the rebels, omitting reports of the militants’ atrocities against civilians, the Syrian regime’s media behave as if there were no calls for freedoms and reforms in the country.
Syria has been engulfed by a popular uprising against President Bashar Al-Assad for over a year now. Opposition forces submit daily claims of people killed in fights with regular forces. The reports are hard to verify as the state remains closed to most foreign journalists. Nonetheless, the UN estimates over 9,000 people have died in the conflict. The Syrian authorities maintain they are fighting foreign insurgency, which has taken lives of over 2,000 troops.
Here we go….
(credit: Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES (CBS) — A bill authored by a Southland lawmaker that could potentially allow the federal government to prevent any Americans who owe back taxes from traveling outside the U.S. is one step closer to becoming law.
Senate Bill 1813 was introduced back in November by Senator Barbara Boxer (D-Los Angeles) to “reauthorize Federal-aid highway and highway safety construction programs, and for other purposes” .
After clearing the Senate on a 74 – 22 vote on March 14, SB 1813 is now headed for a vote in the House of Representatives, where it’s expected to encounter stiffer opposition among the GOP majority.
In addition to authorizing appropriations for federal transportation and infrastructure programs, the “Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act” or “MAP-21″ includes a provision that would allow for the “revocation or denial” of a passport for anyone with “certain unpaid taxes” or “tax delinquencies”.
Section 40304 of the legislation states that any individual who owes more than $50,000 to the Internal Revenue Service may be subject to “action with respect to denial, revocation, or limitation of a passport”.
The bill does allow for exceptions in the event of emergency or humanitarian situations or limited return travel to the U.S., or in cases when any tax debt is currently being repaid in a “timely manner” or when collection efforts have been suspended.
However, there does not appear to be any specific language requiring a taxpayer to be charged with tax evasion or any other crime in order to have their passport revoked or limited — only that a notice of lien or levy has been filed by the IRS.
Boxer vowed last week to push House Republicans to pass the bipartisan transportation bill that would keep the Highway Trust Fund from going bankrupt.
“Thousands of businesses are at stake, and eventually we are talking about nearly three million jobs at stake,” she said in a statement. “There are many people on both sides of the aisle in the Senate who want to get our bill, MAP-21, passed into law, and I am going to do everything I can to keep the pressure on the Republican House to do just that.”
BETTER TITLE: “Arrogant assholes get fed up with Arrogant asshole – eject him out of asshole…” (sorry)
So shilling for Obama Corp didn’t pay off for you Keef? Maybe this will wake you up but we really doubt it.
For nearly a year now, Al Gore and Joel Hyatt have been building their liberal cable news channel, Current TV, with the mercurial television anchorman Keith Olbermann at its center.
This week, the center collapsed.
Current said on Friday afternoon that it had fired Mr. Olbermann — one of the nation’s most prominent progressive speakers — just a year into his five-year, $50 million contract. It was the culmination of months of murky disputes between Mr. Olbermann and the channel that he was supposed to save from the throes of ratings oblivion.
Yet as inevitable as it might have seemed to some in the television business who know the long history of antipathy between Mr. Olbermann and his employers, it was nonetheless shocking to his fans, to his detractors and to staff members at Current when the announcement was made.
Forty-five minutes afterward, in a stream of Twitter messages, Mr. Olbermann threatened to take legal action against the channel and said its claims about him were untrue. In part because of the prospect of litigation, executives at Current declined to comment on the firing on Friday. But they immediately named as his replacement Eliot Spitzer, the former governor of New York, who took over Mr. Olbermann’s 8 p.m. time slot on Friday night.
By replacing Mr. Olbermann, Mr. Spitzer is getting a second shot at an 8 p.m. talk show; in 2010, two years after he resigned the governorship after he admitted having patronized a prostitution ring, he led a short-lived show on CNN. It was canceled in mid-2011.
In a letter posted on Current’s Web site, Mr. Gore and Mr. Hyatt wrote, “We are confident that our viewers will be able to count on Governor Spitzer to deliver critical information on a daily basis.”
With those words — “on a daily basis” — the founders of Current hinted at one of the reasons for Mr. Olbermann’s termination.
He clashed early and often with Mr. Hyatt, and especially with David Bohrman, a former CNN executive who was installed as president of Current last summer. The clashes became visible when Mr. Olbermann started anchoring his program, “Countdown,” in front of a funereal black backdrop, apparently out of frustration about technical difficulties.
Mr. Olbermann also declined Current’s requests to host special hours of primary election coverage in January, causing lawyers from both sides to intercede. Eventually an election coverage plan was cobbled together, but in January and February, he continued to miss many days of work, as he himself acknowledged on his Twitter page. He attributed some of his absences to throat problems.
In public, Current remained supportive of Mr. Olbermann, whom Mr. Hyatt called “the big gun in our lineup” during an interview on March 5 to promote new political programming on weekday mornings.
“It’s all on top of his shoulders,” Mr. Hyatt said, even as he added new programs, in part as a hedge against the possibility of Mr. Olbermann’s departure.
Behind the scenes, tensions were mounting. That same day, the eve of the Super Tuesday Republican primaries, Mr. Olbermann decided to take a vacation day despite a warning from Current that it would constitute a breach of contract, according to a person with knowledge of the matter, who insisted on anonymity because this person was not authorized to speak on the record.
In a termination letter on Thursday morning, Current cited “unauthorized absences” as one of the reasons. It also cited a failure to promote the channel and disparagement of the channel’s executives.
Mr. Olbermann, however, has said he has been very careful to fulfill the terms of his contract. On Twitter on Friday afternoon, he apologized to his fans for joining Current at all, calling it “a sincere and well-intentioned gesture on my part, but in retrospect a foolish one.”
He encouraged people to “read of a previous occasion Mr. Hyatt found himself in court for having unjustly fired an employee,” and linked to a New York Times article from 1990 that reported on a ruling against Mr. Hyatt’s firm that found that it had illegally removed the head of its Philadelphia office, Clarence B. Cain, after learning he had AIDS.
To many in the television business, the separation was not a question of if, but when. Mr. Olbermann has a history of abruptly and angrily leaving jobs, dating back at least to his days at ESPN, where he was a co-anchor of “SportsCenter” in the 1990s.
Fourteen months ago, Mr. Olbermann abruptly left MSNBC, where he had worked for eight years. There, he nearly single-handedly gave the channel an identity as a liberal counterweight to Fox News — just as Current hoped he would do for it — but he also alienated staff members.
Executives at MSNBC had no public reaction on Friday to Mr. Olbermann’s departure from another channel. But Nielsen ratings demonstrate that Mr. Olbermann was not able to recreate his success there.
In his 40 weeks on Current TV, he had an average of 177,000 viewers at 8 p.m., down from the roughly one million that he had each night on MSNBC. Just 57,000 of those viewers on any given night were between the ages of 25 and 54, the coveted advertising demographic for cable news. Still, Mr. Olbermann ranked as the highest-rated program on Current.
Speculation immediately turned on Friday to what Mr. Olbermann might or might not do next, given that he has moved jobs so many times in the past. Media critics and opponents of Mr. Olbermann’s cracked jokes online about public-access TV and door-to-door visits. For the moment, he at least has Twitter, where he has 377,000 followers.
As the news of his firing reverberated Friday night, his representatives were able to secure him a big-time (albeit one-time) gig: next Tuesday he’ll be the lead guest on CBS’s “Late Show with David Letterman.”