“I know very little about it,” Maddow said. “All I know is that it was between Keith and the company, it didn’t involve any of the rest of us, and he was really gracious and nice when he left.”
Maher said that, in his opinion, the show went “downhill” when Olbermann started retooling his “Worst Persons In The World” segment. “Stop organizing life around the people who don’t get the joke,” he said. “Fuck them if they don’t get a joke.”
The outspoken host abruptly announced his departure on Friday evening, sending shock waves through the cable news world.
But the sudden departure has a history, and the timing does not rule out a preemptive MSNBC move. The gadfly commentator first told the network last April that he wanted to leave and began negotiating his exit then, according to an individual with knowledge of the situation.
Olbermann abandoned the notion of leaving at that time but revived his plans in recent weeks with new representation from the talent agency ICM.
With two years left on his $7 million a year contract, Olbermann was seeking a full exit package but he really has his eye on creating his own media empire in the style of Huffington Post, according to the individual. That way, Olbermann would control his own brand and, in his view, potentially earn far more as an owner.
By the way, it doesn’t have to be as simple as “Comcast In, KO Out.” While we all harbor our suspicions and the feuding with his bosses had been ongoing and public, and the reporting structure in the organization was being changed with the new merger, and all that stuff.
But there is another element that I think is worth thinking about. In basically the last year, he lost his mom and his dad, and he really didn’t even take a break. He’s been doing this for eight years straight, and that kind of thing, in the poisonous work atmosphere that existed with his bosses, it just takes a toll on you. I’d wager that in the end, he just had enough and they agreed to part ways.
Sometimes you’ve just had enough of a situation, and you have to say to hell with it.
That’s exactly what I’d wager too.